Presentation on theme: "Technical Barriers to Trade Agreement - Salient Features"— Presentation transcript:
1 Technical Barriers to Trade Agreement - Salient Features Ms Shashi SareenDirector, Export Inspection Council, Ministry of Commerce & Industry
2 WTO ScenarioEstablishment of WTO - Dismantling of barriers for free flow of tradeCreation of global market with equal access to all countriesQuality, health & safety & environmental issues gaining importanceRole of standards both mandatory and voluntary & CA proceduresRules and disciplines laid down in terms of non-tariff agreements – SPS,TBT & PSI, basically aim at protecting interest of foreign suppliers
3 TBT Agreement - Objectives Allows members to apply standards, technical regulations, conformity assessment procedures forprotection of human safety or health (sockets, seat belts, labelling cigarettes)Protection of animal & plant life or health (pollution, extinct eg turtle extruder device)Protection of environment (level of vehicle emissions)Prevention of deceptive practices (labelling, size)Other objectives (quality-size of fruits & vegs, tech harmonization-telecom)However need to ensure that these do not create obstacles to international trade
4 TBT Agreement Application ScopeApplies to all products including industrial & agri products, both voluntary standards & technical regulations(standards to which compliance mandatory)Not apply to SPS measures as defined in SPS AgreementCoversProduct characteristicsProcess & production methods(PPM) that have an effect on product characteristicsTerminology & symbolsPackaging & labelling requirements
5 TBT Principles Avoidance of unnecessary obstacles to trade Non-discrimination & national treatmentHarmonizationEquivalence of technical regulationsMutual recognition & conformity assessment proceduresTransparency
6 Avoidance of unnecessary obstacles to trade Least Trade Restrictive – should not be formulated & applied in a manner so as to cause any unnecessary obstacle to trade – not more trade restrictive than needed to fulfill legitimate objectives (prevent deceptive practices, protection of human, animal or plant life or health, or environment)Examples – site for carrying out CA, sampling procedures, methods of testing or their sensitivity levels
7 Non-discrimination & national treatment Most Favoured Nation Basis – should apply on a MFN basis to imports from all sourcesNational Treatment Principle – shall not extend to imported products treatment less favourable than that extended to domestically produced products
8 Harmonization Why harmonize Benefits to producer – can cater to needs of all countries leading to productions of scale eg cars, mobiles, TV sets, etcBenefits to consumers – wide choice, spare parts, etcHarmonization & TBT - standards/tech regulations/CA procedures to be consistent with or based on international standards unless “their use ineffective or inappropriate” to fulfill objectiveTechnical regulations in accordance with International standards are presumed not to create unnecessary obstacles to tradeparticipate actively in work of ISO/other international bodies
9 Mutual Recognition of Conformity Assessment (Article 6) CA procedures are those used to determine that requirements met. Include sampling, inspection, testing, evaluation, verification of conformity, accreditation, etc.Equivalenceensure that each others results of CA procedures are recognized based on an equivalence (ie even if these differ, if they are satisfied that the procedures used offer an assurance of conformity with their standards/technical regulations) (6.1)compliance with relevant Guides & accreditations is an indication of adequate tech competence of CABs (6.1.1)Encouraged to enter into negotiations for Agreements for recognition of results of each others’ CA procedures (6.3)
10 Transparency Notifications all proposed, new and changed measures are to be notified by members to the TBT Committee of WTO Secretariat,to be provided to members, translated versions if requested, & any deviations from international standardsgive sufficient notice to allow for adapting to these reqts.If technical regulation differs from international standards, need to also take into account comments of exporterEnquiry PointsAn enquiry point to be set up – a focal pointanswer all reasonable enquiriesprovide documents on technical regulations, standards & CA procedures;any agreements to be notified to secretariat
11 Equivalence of technical regulations Accept as equivalent, technical regulations of other members’ even if these differ from their own, if they are satisfied that these adequately fulfill the objectives of their own regulations (Article 2.7)Example – auto emission levels controlled through catalytic converter, objective can also be achieved through use of diesel engines
12 Key Features for Preparation, Adoption & Application of Voluntary Standards Code of Good Practice for Standards Development – to be followedSubstantive ProvisionsNSBs to follow principles & rules similar for mandatory standards ie base on & participate in international standards formulation, apply on a MFN basis, National Treatment Principle, Least Trade Restrictiveavoid duplication or overlapspecify requirements in terms of performance6-mthly programme of work60 days for commentsprovide copy to interested partytake comments into accountpromptly publish
13 Other Key Features Technical assistance provided to developing countries in the area of setting up NSBs, participation in int standardization, preparing technical regulations, setting up regulatory bodies for CA activities, methods of CA, etcSpecial & Differential Treatmentmore favourable treatment to be provided to developing countriestake into account their special developmental, financial & trade needs when developing tech regulations, standards and CA procedures so that no unnecessary obstacles created to exports from developing countries.
14 Institutions, Consultations & Dispute Settlement Committee on TBT established having representatives from each members meet 2-3 times a year, for discussing operation of Agreement or furtherance of objectivesConsultations & settlement of disputes shall be under auspices of Dispute Settlement Body of WTO. However a provision for technical expert groups to assist in issues of technical nature has been provided
15 Some ExamplesPeru – labelling of footwear for ‘country of origin’ & corporate tax numberProducts to have atleast 60% of shelf life remaining before importsBIS certification marking & introduce less onerous proceduresMRP labelling agreements
17 Key Features for Preparation, adoption & Application of Technical Regulations Most Favoured Nation Basis – should apply on a MFN basis to imports from all sourcesNational Treatment Principle – shall not extend to imported products treatment less favourable than that extended to domestically produced productsLeast Trade Restrictive – should not be formulated & applied in a manner so as to cause any unnecessary obstacle to trade – not more trade restrictive than needed to fulfil legitimate objectives (prevent deceptive practices, protection of human, animal or plant life or health, or environment). Contd..
18 Key Features on Technical Regulations Should be based on scientific information & evidenceHarmonisation - standards/tech regulations/CA procedures to be consistent with or based on international standards – participate actively in work of ISO/other international bodiesTransparencyall proposed, new and changed measures are to be notified by members to the TBT Committee of WTO Secretariat,to be provided to members, translated versions if requestedgive sufficient notice to allow for adapting to these requirements.If technical regulation differs from international standards, need to also take into account comments of exporter
19 Other Key Features Information An enquiry point to be set upanswer all reasonable enquiriesprovide documents on technical regulations, standards & CA procedures;any agreements to be notified to secretariatTechnical assistance is provided to developing countries in the area of setting up NSBs, participation in int standardization, preparing technical regulations, setting up regulatory bodies for CA activities, methods of CA, etc
Your consent to our cookies if you continue to use this website.