WTO updates 10/21

October 12, 2021

Panels established to review steel duties in China, food import measures in Panama

The Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) agreed at its meeting on 27 September to establish two new dispute panels. At the request of Japan, a panel will examine China’s anti-dumping duties on imports of stainless steel from Japan. At the request of Costa Rica, a panel will review measures imposed by Panama on various agricultural imports originating from Costa Rica.

Applications open for online workshop on Government Procurement Agreement

Government officials from WTO members are invited to submit applications to take part in the 2021 Advanced Global e-Workshop on the Agreement on Government Procurement to be held virtually from 25 October to 26 November 2021. The purpose of the workshop is to develop participants’ familiarity with the Agreement on Government Procurement 2012 (GPA 2012) and to provide an opportunity for the sharing of their perspectives on the link between government procurement, trade, economic development and good governance.

China appeals panel report regarding US duties on photovoltaic cells

China has notified the Dispute Settlement Body of its decision to appeal the panel report in the case brought by China in “United States — Safeguard Measure on Imports of Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Products” (DS562). The panel report was circulated to WTO members on 2 September. The appeal was circulated to WTO members on 20 September.

Ukraine launches safeguard investigation on PVC profile

Ukraine notified the WTO’s Committee on Safeguards that it initiated on 1 September 2021 a safeguard investigation on PVC (polyvinyl chloride) profile.

WTO panel issues report regarding US safeguards on imported photovoltaic cells from China

The WTO circulated the panel report in the case brought by China in “United States — Safeguard Measure on Imports of Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Products” (DS562).

EAC meets to transpose the 2022 edition of its Common External Tariff into French

In order to cater for the needs of its French-speaking Partner States and users, the East African Community held a meeting of tariff experts to transpose the HS 2022 edition of its Common External Tariff (CET) into the French language. The meeting took place from 13 to 18 September 2021 in Moshi, Tanzania. It was conducted with the support of the WCO, within the framework of the EU-WCO Programme for the Harmonized System in Africa (HS-Africa Programme), funded by the European Union.The meeting was preceded by an EAC regional consultation organized in March 2021 to prepare the English linguistic version of the HS 2022 EAC CET, with the participation of all the Community Partner States. It also falls under the HS 2022 implementation work-plan established by the EAC with the support of the HS-Africa Programme following the first EAC regional consultation that took place in Mombasa from 10 to 13 September 2019 where it was identified as important to transpose the CET into the French language during the process of validation and finalization so that all EAC partner states could have access to the CET aligned in both in English and French and ensure timely and coordinated implementation.

Experts examined the 2022 edition of the EAC CET and developed the French language version of it, while also ensuring that it incorporated all the changes made to the EAC CET from July 2017 to June 2021. The 2022 edition of the EAC CET was proofread, and some errors were rectified, in particular, in Chapters 16, 63 and 70. Moreover, the progress of the preparatory work to migrate national classification systems to the HS 2022 EAC CET was discussed.

WCO Trade Tools: The nomenclature of the HS 2022 is now available online!

The new version of the Harmonized System Nomenclature will enter into force on 1 January 2022. WCO Trade Tools is the new online database that encompasses the last five editions of the HS and functionalities to support international trade actors in the classification of goods and the determination of the corresponding Customs taxes and tariffs. The platform offers a single point of access to the Harmonized System, preferential Rules of Origin and Valuation, through a completely new, user-centric, and ergonomic interface. Accessible, free of charge, as of today on WCO Trade Tools, this 2022 edition introduces significant changes with more than 350 new entries covering a wide range of goods. Revised every five years to reflect the ever-changing trading practices, several high-profile product categories were added and given greater visibility, such as edible insects, drones and e-waste.

WTO launches new online tool to help users navigate changes in product nomenclatures

The WTO on 7 October launched a new online tool for keeping track of changes in the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (HS), the system used for the classification of traded goods. The HS Tracker, developed with the support of the World Customs Organization (WCO), is also aimed at helping customs officials and traders prepare for HS amendments that will enter into force on 1 January 2022.




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