Council for Trade in Goods - Introduction of Harmonized System 2012 changes into WTO schedules of tariff concessions - Draft waiver decision
作者:Council for Trade in Goods



Draft Waiver Decision

The General Council,

Having regard to Articles IV:2 and IX:3 of the Marrakesh Agreement establishing the World Trade Organization (the "WTO Agreement");

Recognizing that the adoption of the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (hereinafter referred to as the "Harmonized System") has, in addition to facilitating international trade and the analysis of trade statistics, ensured greater uniformity in countries' customs classification, thus enabling them to monitor and protect the value of tariff concessions;

Noting that, in accordance with Article 16 of the Harmonized System Convention, the Council of the World Customs Organization adopted a Recommendation on 26 June 2009 concerning amendments to the Harmonized System which came into force on 1 January 2012 (hereinafter referred to as "HS2012 changes");

Considering that the General Council by its decisions of 30 November 2011[1], 11 December 2012[2], 26 November 2013[3], 11 December 2014[4], 30 November 2015[5], 7 December 2016[6], 1 December 2017[7], 13 December 2018[8], and 10 December 2019[9], acting pursuant to the provisions of Articles IV:2 and IX:3 of the WTO Agreement, suspended the application of the provisions of Article II of GATT 1994 for certain Members, from the date of implementation of HS2012 changes for those Members until 31 December 2021, to the extent necessary to implement domestically the HS2012 changes pending incorporation of such changes into their Schedules of Concessions, subject to certain conditions;

Noting the procedure adopted by the General Council to introduce HS2012 changes, to Schedules of Concessions[10], which in certain cases may require negotiations and/or consultations under Article XXVIII of GATT 1994;

Considering that the Members listed in the Annex[11] to this decision concerned would need more time to proceed with consultations or possible Article XXVIII negotiations;

Considering that other Members not listed in the Annex to this Decision may already have implemented domestically the HS2012 changes, or may intend to do so, pending incorporation of such changes into their Schedules of Concessions, and may also desire to be covered by this waiver;

Decides, in view of the exceptional circumstances, to suspend the application of the provisions of Article II of GATT 1994:

(a)  for those Members listed in the Annex, for a further year until 31 December 2021; and

(b)  for any other Member not listed in the Annex that notifies the Committee on Market Access of its wish to be included in the waiver decision from the date of implementation of the HS2012 changes for that Member until 31 December 2021;

to the extent necessary for the purpose of enabling such Members to implement domestically the recommended amendments to the Harmonized System nomenclature pending incorporation of such changes into their Schedules of Concessions, subject to the following conditions:

                             i.        Members covered by paragraphs (a) and (b) of this Decision shall, where necessary, promptly enter into negotiations and/or consultations with interested Members pursuant to paragraphs 1-3 of Article XXVIII of GATT 1994;

                            ii.        The negotiations and/or consultations mentioned above shall, to the extent possible, be completed by 31 December 2021; and

                           iii.        In accordance with the provisions of Article XXVIII:3 of GATT 1994, applied mutatis mutandis to the present waiver, pending the entry into force of the results of the negotiations and/or consultations mentioned above, the other Members will be free to suspend concessions initially negotiated with the Member concerned to the extent that they consider that adequate compensation is not offered by the Member concerned.

[1] WT/L/834.

[2] WT/L/875 and WT/L/875/Add.1.

[3] WT/L/902.

[4] WT/L/947.

[5] WT/L/969.

[6] WT/L/998 and WT/L/998/Add.1.

[7] WT/L/1028.

[8] WT/L/1050.

[9] WT/L/1084.

[10] WT/L/831.

[11] Column one of the Annex lists the Members and column two indicates the Member's date of implementation of HS2012 changes.