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Committee agrees on FTA elements

Khaleej Times

Committee agrees on FTA elements


24 July 2005

DUBAI - In a meeting held recently at the Ministry of Finance and Industry (MoFI) in Dubai, the Rules of Origin National Committee agreed upon various elements including the official forms that will be adopted in the Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) that are currently under negotiation between the UAE and other countries.

The meeting was attended by representatives from the Ministry of Finance and Industry (MoFI), the Ministry of Power, the Ministry of Agriculture and the Federal Customs Authority. All the participants urged the AGCC General Secretariat to abide by the general regulations of the AGCC Rules of Origin.

Saeed Abdullah Al Rukn, deputy director of the Department of Industrial Development (DID) at MoFI, said "Upholding the country’s vision is critical in all that we do and this will therefore form the basis for any agreement that we intend to conclude."

He also added that the Rules Of Origin general regulations stipulate three main conditions for classifying a product as a "national product". Firstly, all the ingredients should be locally made, secondly the value-added onto the product should not be less than 40 per cent, and thirdly when a finished product is made in the country even though it is manufactured from imported raw material, it is considered a local product.

Al Rukn confirmed that unifying the forms for the Rules of Origin for all agreements that UAE is negotiating, will help unify the mechanism of work, so that the UAE has a clear basis when conducting negotiations.

He also clarified that the Ministry of Finance and Industry has held several meetings with industrial sectors to take into consideration their points of view in this regard.

In addition, Al Rukn said that the policies of the committee aim at supporting the UAE’s industrial sector in order to guarantee healthy competition for goods and products from the United Arab Emirates in the market place. The participants at the meeting also discussed the items on the agenda that the technical team will be addressing while participating in the meetings to be held with the EU, in Riyadh on July 25, as part of the ongoing AGCC-Europe FTA negotiations.