Kathmandu, November 20
Only exporters certified by the European Union (EU) will be able to export goods to the European market from the middle of 2017. The 28-nation bloc has provided a platform to exporters of least developed countries including Nepal to get registered for the certification process and the rule will be effective from mid-2017, according to Manoj Acharya, under secretary at the Ministry of Commerce.
EU has asked traders exporting to European market to get registered at the platform provided by the EU and the Trade and Export Promotion Centre (TEPC), under the Ministry of Commerce, will facilitate traders to get certified to be eligible to export to the European market. “European Union is trying to make exporters themselves responsible which is why they want to import goods only through authorised traders,” he said.
“EU will recognise authorised exporters and deal directly with them if any issue arises regarding products.”
In fact, EU is going to enforce the new regulation from January 1, 2017, but it will give a period of six months to the exporters to abide by the new laws. Nepal has been enjoying zero duty facility for various products (except arms and ammunition) during imports to the European market. The EU had adopted a reformed Generalised System of Preference (GSP) law on October 31, 2012, which offered zero tariff facility to LDCs to provide them a level playing field in the markets of developed nations. This facility was extended so that the industrial (production) base of LDCs could be strengthened.
TEPC has also urged exporters to get registered at the platform provided by EU to get the certificate of authorised exporter, according to Rajendra Singh, senior officer at TEPC.
“After mid-2017 exporters not certified by the EU might face hassles in exporting to EU under GSP facility.”
Anup Bahadur Malla, chairman of the Export Committee under the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, has said that the EU has been preparing to digitise the entire customs procedure and exporters have been urged to be certified. “After being certified, the concerned trader will get exporter code that will consist of all the information of the exporter, and through this code the trader will be able to send details of the consignment through online platform while exporting goods to EU,” as per Malla.
EU is a major export destination for Nepali carpets, garments, handicraft products, pashmina, silver jewellery and medicinal herbs.
A version of this article appears in print on November 21, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.