Euro Med Agreement

6 As regards trade in industrial products, customs provisions have been fully implemented in the case of Tunisia. Morocco and Israel have also entered the final phase of their process of liberalization of industrial goods. However, non-tariff barriers (NBTs) remain a major problem. To tackle these DNTs, the EU intends to conclude conformity assessment and accreditation agreements (CBAAs) with NCMs and to put in place dispute settlement mechanisms for trade rules in EMAs. [17] With regard to the former, an agreement has been reached with Israel in the pharmaceutical sector and, with regard to the latter, negotiations are already initialled with Jordan (2009). Lebanon (2009), Morocco (2009) and Tunisia (2008). [18] The next steps in this process will be for the Commission to present to the Council proposals to amend the protocols on origin in the bilateral agreements between the EU and interested countries, and their adoption by the Council, which should be completed before the summer. The competent authorities under bilateral agreements should adopt the revised protocols as soon as the parties concerned have completed the internal procedures necessary for their approval. Before the entry into force of the revised rules, the Commission will publish detailed guidelines for their application and organise seminars to explain how they work for the benefit of economic operators and customs authorities.

The revised rules will be more business-friendly and better adapted to current business and trade needs, as well as those introduced in recent EU trade agreements. The main improvements are as follows: dcFTAs have an impact on all economic sectors, including agriculture, by removing tariff and non-tariff barriers. These are the “WTO+” and “new generation” agreements: they go beyond the WTO (for the protection of intellectual property, the opening up of public procurement, competition rules, etc.) and impose regulatory harmonisation (in this case the adoption of the European regulatory system). They also liberalize investments and involve an investor-state dispute settlement mechanism. 13 The lack of incentives that the EU can offer to NNPs is an important consequence of the internally contradictory and compartmentalised nature of the EU as a commercial personality. After the agreement of a difficult intra-European compromise, it is almost impossible to deviate from this position in negotiations with third countries. Although most NCMs are strong supporters of further liberalisation of trade in agricultural products and free movement, they often do not have considerable negotiating power to provoke concessions from the EU. Countries like Morocco and Tunisia export almost 80% of their products to the EU, meaning the EU is its main trading partner, while the Mediterranean region is only the EU`s fifth largest trading partner. [37] This dependence is reinforced by the fact that IMC fails to reach a common negotiating position due to mutual problems (see paragraph 3.3). . .

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