Would there be zero tariff of PH goods in EU Soon?
If the Philippines’ application to the EU’s new zero-duty programme will be approved, then four export products will soon see a boost in sales as early as January 2015.
Once covered by the EU-GSP+ (Generalised scheme of preferences plus) programme for developing countries, textile and garments, processed fruit, bicycles and fisheries will stand to gain the most from the zero-duty policy and will bring a strong economic impact to the country. At present, tariffs for the products are:
- 8–10% for textile and garments
- 30% for processed fruit and juices
- 20% for fisheries, especially tuna
Other reasons why these products will benefit the most from the EU-GSP+ are demand for these products is high in the EU and these are emerging sectors in the country, for example the bicycle parts industry.
The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has already submitted the Philippines’ application for EU-GSP+ in February. The EU has six months to approve or reject the application. Head of Economic and Trade Section of the EU Delegation to the Philippines Walter van Hattum said ‘a decision should be made before the end of this year.’
Countries approved for the EU-GSP+ will continue to benefit from zero duties as long as it has not reached middle income status. The income level of the country will be based on evaluations to be conducted by the EU.
The Philippines has long benefited from the older EU-GSP scheme. Around €1b of its €5b exports to the EU in 2013 are already enjoying zero duty. Of the total €5b, 20% had reduced tariff while 65% had zero tariff.
The EU Delegation to the Philippines encouraged businesses in these four sectors to take advantage of the opportunity once available.