Turkey, Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia and the Palestinian Authority of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. These countries are all part of the Barcelona process.
a) General introduction
The Euro-Mediterranean Partnership was launched with a joint declaration of the Foreign Ministers from the European Union and Mediterranean Partners in Barcelona in November 1995 - hence also called the "Barcelona Process". Its overall objective is to provide a framework for strengthened dialogue and comprehensive co-operation in the Mediterranean .
The Partners have agreed upon a strategy aiming at creating an area of peace, stability and shared prosperity through the progressive establishment of free trade between the EU and its Mediterranean partners and amongst the partners themselves by 2010.
The first step towards the creation of this free trade area is the conclusion of a full set of Euro-Mediterranean association agreements between the EU and its partners in the Mediterranean , granting reciprocal trade preferences. These agreements replace the co-operation agreements concluded in the 1970s, which implied unilateral trade preferences. The only co-operation agreement still in force is with Syria. From 1998 to date, Euro-Mediterranean association agreements with Tunisia, Morocco, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, the Palestinian Authority and Egypt have entered into force. The agreement with Algeria entered into force on 1st September 2005. The association agreement with Syria was initialled on 18 October 2004.
For more detailed information on the Barcelona Process, see the websites of DG Trade and of DG External Relations.
A system of Pan-Euro-Mediterranean cumulation of origin is being created. The Council of the European Union on 11 October 2005 adopted the amended protocols on rules of origin annexed to the various agreements (IP/05/1256). The system will be applicable between the EC and Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, West Bank and Gaza Strip, the EEA / EFTA countries ( Iceland, Norway and Switzerland (including Liechtenstein)), Romania, Bulgaria, the Faroe Islands and Turkey (including coal and steel and agricultural products) .
b) Legal framework
The definition of the concept of 'originating products' and methods of administrative cooperationis contained in a Protocol to each bilateral agreement. The reference to the global agreements and to the origin protocols is to be found in the list of arrangements. Here below the amendments to the origin protocols currently in force are listed.
c) Specific provisions
NOTICE: These specific provisions only contain information on cases where the rules of the particular arrangement differ from the common provisions, or where these common provisions need to be complemented. Therefore, always check the common provisions too.
Bilateral cumulation is common to all the co-operation and association agreements with the Mediterranean countries.
Diagonal cumulation is provided for in the agreements with Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt and Lebanon. It has also been introduced in the text currently negotiated with Syria.
Moreover, diagonal cumulation is provided for in the new model protocol for the extension of the pan-European cumulation of origin to all Mediterranean countries (pan-Euro-Mediterranean cumulation), which was endorsed by the Euro-Med Trade Ministers' conference of 7 July 2003 in Palermo.
Full cumulation is provided for in the agreements with Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria only.
The operations that are considered as insufficient working or processing to confer the status of originating products are listed in:
- Article 3 §3 of the origin Protocol to the Community agreement with Syria ;
- Article 6 of the origin Protocol to the Community agreement with Israel , Jordan , PLO;
- Article 7 of the origin Protocol to the Community agreement with Lebanon and Egypt ;
- Article 8 of the origin Protocol to the Community agreements with Morocco and Tunisia (see the list of agreements above for ease of reference);
- Article 8 of the origin protocol to the Community agreement with Algeria.
General tolerance rule
This rule is not included in the agreements with Morocco , Tunisia and Algeria .
It is however included in the agreements with Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon (Art.6§3), Israel (Art. 5 §2) and PLO (Art.5§2) which provides that non-originating materials, which according to the list rules should not be used in the manufacture of a given product, may nevertheless be used provided that their total value does not exceed 10% of the ex-works price of the product. This rule does not apply to products falling within chapters 50 to 63 of the HS.
No drawback rule
This rule is not included in the agreements with Tunisia , Morocco and Syria .
This rule is however included in the agreements with Israel , PLO, Egypt , Lebanon, Jordan and Algeria. The last four agreements also provide for the suspension of this rule for a certain period of time after the entry into force of the agreement itself, i.e. in the agreements with Egypt, Lebanon and Algeria this period is 6 years, in the agreement with Jordan it is 4 years. This means that this rule will not be applicable respectively until 31/12/2010 for Egypt , until 28/02/2009 for Lebanon, until 30/04/2006 for Jordan and until 31/08/2011 for Algeria. At the end of this period, the agreements with Lebanon, Egypt and Algeria provide for the application of partial drawback, which implies the payment of a partial duty rate (10% for textile products and 5% for all the other products, excluding agricultural products) on non-originating materials imported from a third country. Even though the agreement with PLO provides for the application of this rule from 1 January 2000 , it is still temporarily suspended.
Principle of territoriality
A provision on extra-territoriality is included only in the agreement with Israel (Art. 12), which allows for some processing to be done outside of the Party concerned without it affecting the originating status of the final product.
Proof of origin
The originating status of a product is proved by either:
- a movement certificate EUR.1 issued by the customs authorities of the exporting country or
- an invoice declaration. This may be made out by an approved exporter or by any exporter for a consignment consisting of one or more packages containing products whose total value does not exceed € 5 110 (in the agreements with Morocco and Tunisia), or € 6 000 (in all the other agreements except Syria).
Period of validity of proof of origin
The period of validity is four months.
Exemptions from the requirement to present proof of origin
A provision on exemption from proof of origin is included in all agreements with the Med countries. What varies is the maximum permitted value.
In the agreements with Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, PLO, Tunisia and Algeria, the submission of a proof of origin is not required when the total value of the imported products does not exceed € 500 in case of small packages or € 1 200 in case of products forming part of travellers' personal luggage.
In the agreements with Syria the value not to be exceeded is € 565.
The simplified procedure for the issue of EUR.1 movement certificates is provided for in the agreements with Morocco and Tunisia (Art. 22) only. This procedure allows an approved exporter, under certain conditions, to issue an EUR.1 certificate himself.