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Union Customs Code

26-09-2018

The study examines whether the Union Customs Code is being properly implemented for the benefit of the European consumers, businesses and EU budget. It covers the complex legislative and administrative framework of the UCC and its governance structure. It assesses the impact of the transitional measures attached to the UCC. It moreover addresses the specific challenges raised in the area of E-Commerce.

The study examines whether the Union Customs Code is being properly implemented for the benefit of the European consumers, businesses and EU budget. It covers the complex legislative and administrative framework of the UCC and its governance structure. It assesses the impact of the transitional measures attached to the UCC. It moreover addresses the specific challenges raised in the area of E-Commerce.

Understanding the EU customs union

20-09-2017

In December 2016, the European Commission adopted its long-term plan to strengthen the governance and management of the EU customs union. The customs union, in place since 1968, is a pillar of the single market, and vital to the free flow of goods and services. According to the Commission, a strong customs system helps foster competitive businesses, increases wealth, and also protects against terrorist, health, and environmental threats. The customs union operates under the legal framework of the ...

In December 2016, the European Commission adopted its long-term plan to strengthen the governance and management of the EU customs union. The customs union, in place since 1968, is a pillar of the single market, and vital to the free flow of goods and services. According to the Commission, a strong customs system helps foster competitive businesses, increases wealth, and also protects against terrorist, health, and environmental threats. The customs union operates under the legal framework of the Union Customs Code (UCC), in force since May 2016. However, while customs rules are the same across the EU, national customs authorities do not always apply them in a consistent manner. The Commission has therefore proposed structural and administrative changes, inter alia, on customs policy monitoring, formulation, and implementation. In addition, the Commission proposes to tackle administrative issues (e.g. application of EU law, competency building for custom officials, aligning new EU-wide IT systems dedicated to customs procedures), and border management coordination. The European Parliament is critical of the differences between customs systems at the national level, in particular regarding customs duties and customs clearance, since these create fragmentation, additional administrative burdens (in particular for small and medium-sized enterprises), and hamper e-commerce. The Parliament suggests, among other things, the creation of more uniform electronic customs requirements and risk-assessment programmes. Parliament has also called on the Commission to present an interim report evaluating EU customs policy by 2017, including a review of the problems, overlaps, gaps, and complaints filed with customs authorities, and customs infringements.

Brexit negotiations - Progress to date

15-09-2017

Since their official launch in June 2017, three rounds of negotiations on the United Kingdom's (UK) withdrawal from the European Union (EU) have been held. So far, the EU and UK have discussed the priority issues of citizens' rights, the financial settlement and the Irish border, but disagreements and ambiguities persist. After the third round, 'no decisive progress' was reached, according to Michel Barnier, the EU chief negotiator, which is likely to impede any advance to the second phase of talks ...

Since their official launch in June 2017, three rounds of negotiations on the United Kingdom's (UK) withdrawal from the European Union (EU) have been held. So far, the EU and UK have discussed the priority issues of citizens' rights, the financial settlement and the Irish border, but disagreements and ambiguities persist. After the third round, 'no decisive progress' was reached, according to Michel Barnier, the EU chief negotiator, which is likely to impede any advance to the second phase of talks in October, on transitional arrangements and the future EU-UK partnership, including trade relations.

Controls of cash entering or leaving the European Union

21-06-2017

The anonymity of cash transactions and the illegal nature of the problems identified in the IA bring about considerable challenges for the analysis, including a limited evidence base and trade-offs between the options to tackle the problems and their impact on several Union principles. The mostly qualitative analysis is generally logical and coherent, leading to a pertinent set of preferred options. For various reasons, however, it provides, very little quantification of costs and none of benefits ...

The anonymity of cash transactions and the illegal nature of the problems identified in the IA bring about considerable challenges for the analysis, including a limited evidence base and trade-offs between the options to tackle the problems and their impact on several Union principles. The mostly qualitative analysis is generally logical and coherent, leading to a pertinent set of preferred options. For various reasons, however, it provides, very little quantification of costs and none of benefits, and focuses mainly on administrative burdens for competent authorities. To partly compensate for the lack of reliable data, despite apparent time constraints for the preparation of the evaluation and the IA – both conducted internally – the IA consistently indicates stakeholder views, which appear to support most of the preferred options of the IA, although they cannot be considered representative due to the small number of respondents.

Control of exports, transfer, brokering, technical assistance and transit of dual-use items

25-01-2017

The IA is well structured, clear and compact. Overall, it appears to provide well-researched explanation of the evidence base of the legislative proposal. The problem definition is illustrated by facts and figures which give a clear view of international security threats. The outcome of the stakeholder consultation is clearly presented and has been integrated into the analysis and the assessment of the different options, with a transparent presentation of stakeholders' views throughout. Nevertheless ...

The IA is well structured, clear and compact. Overall, it appears to provide well-researched explanation of the evidence base of the legislative proposal. The problem definition is illustrated by facts and figures which give a clear view of international security threats. The outcome of the stakeholder consultation is clearly presented and has been integrated into the analysis and the assessment of the different options, with a transparent presentation of stakeholders' views throughout. Nevertheless, the IA has a number of shortcomings. A clearer explanation of the links between the problems and their drivers, the objectives of the legislative proposal and the options considered, would have strengthened the IA. The report would have been more persuasive had it been clearer about the methodological approach to the comparison of the options. Even if the Commission made efforts to collect relevant data in preparation of the IA, the analysis remains essentially qualitative. Finally, the IA remains vague about the overall impact of the proposal on SMEs and competitiveness.

EU Trade Policy and the Wildlife Trade

06-12-2016

The wildlife trade is one of the most lucrative trades in the world. The legal trade into the EU alone is worth EUR 100 billion annually, while the global illegal wildlife trade is estimated to be worth between EUR 8 and 20 billion annually. The trade is highly complex and its legal and illegal forms are often connected. The illegal wildlife trade cannot be tackled via the use of trade policy alone; instead trade instruments need to be used in conjunction with broader means of addressing the wide ...

The wildlife trade is one of the most lucrative trades in the world. The legal trade into the EU alone is worth EUR 100 billion annually, while the global illegal wildlife trade is estimated to be worth between EUR 8 and 20 billion annually. The trade is highly complex and its legal and illegal forms are often connected. The illegal wildlife trade cannot be tackled via the use of trade policy alone; instead trade instruments need to be used in conjunction with broader means of addressing the wide range of reasons why wildlife is traded illegally first place. This includes the need to reduce poverty and inequality in source countries, demand reduction in consumer countries and tackling corruption, organised crime, poor enforcement and low penalties in many source, transit and end user markets. The EU is also facing some new challenges in the legal and illegal wildlife trade, emanating from the growth of e-commerce, expansion of private mailing centres and the growth of containerisation. The EU already has a strong track record in promoting a legal and sustainable trade, while also attempting to tackle the illegal wildlife trade. The EU already has a legal framework (EUWTR) which sets out stricter arrangements than CITES for trading in wildlife products. It has played an active role at CITES since it joined as a member in 2015, and all 20 EU proposals were accepted at CITES CoP17 in 2016. It now has an opportunity to use trade policy to embed and develop this track record further.

Išorės autorius

Rosaleen DUFFY (University of Sheffield, the United KIngdom)

Customs Issues Falling under INTA’s New Remit

21-12-2015

The relation between European Union (EU) trade and customs policies is complex. The customs authorities have an executive function in the administration of trade policy as well as the control of borders, but they also remain accountable to trade policy makers for their performance. Other European Parliament committees touch upon the subject of customs, too. Greater co-ordination may be achieved by encouraging the development of Customs specific performance indicators that can be used for periodic ...

The relation between European Union (EU) trade and customs policies is complex. The customs authorities have an executive function in the administration of trade policy as well as the control of borders, but they also remain accountable to trade policy makers for their performance. Other European Parliament committees touch upon the subject of customs, too. Greater co-ordination may be achieved by encouraging the development of Customs specific performance indicators that can be used for periodic reporting to the European Parliament and elsewhere. A specialist EU Trade Facilitation Agency or Body may be required to monitor the performance of Customs and other border agencies at home and abroad. Such an Agency or Body could also help propagate best practices. The WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement’s Article 13 could provide the foundation for such a European Trade Facilitation Body.

Išorės autorius

Andrew GRAINGER

Ratifying the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement

02-09-2015

Behind its rather formal title, the 'Protocol amending the Marrakesh Agreement establishing the WTO' deals with something very practical: modernising customs and other procedures so that international trade can operate more smoothly. Conclusion by the EU would be a big step forward towards enabling the agreement to come into force.

Behind its rather formal title, the 'Protocol amending the Marrakesh Agreement establishing the WTO' deals with something very practical: modernising customs and other procedures so that international trade can operate more smoothly. Conclusion by the EU would be a big step forward towards enabling the agreement to come into force.

The Product Safety and Market Surveillance Package

15-01-2014

In view of the trialogue negotiations on the European Commission's two proposals for a regulation on market surveillance of products and on consumer product safety, this briefing note aims to contribute to and strengthen the EP's position on Article 7 of the proposal for a regulation on Consumer product safety relating to origin marking, and the provisions relating to sanctions and penalties proposed in both files. The briefing note presents a comparative table, showing provisions from the EU Customs ...

In view of the trialogue negotiations on the European Commission's two proposals for a regulation on market surveillance of products and on consumer product safety, this briefing note aims to contribute to and strengthen the EP's position on Article 7 of the proposal for a regulation on Consumer product safety relating to origin marking, and the provisions relating to sanctions and penalties proposed in both files. The briefing note presents a comparative table, showing provisions from the EU Customs Code in relation to Article 7 of the proposal for a Regulation on Consumer Product Safety and the US system of marks of origin. It also analyses existing EU legislation containing identical or similar types of provisions on sanctions and penalties as proposed in the final IMCO reports on Consumer Product Safety and Market Surveillance of Products.

Išorės autorius

Françoise MANIET (University of Québec in Montréal - UQAM, Canada)

Implementation of the Modernised Customs Code

15-02-2012

The aim of this study is to examine the challenges and conditions relating to the implementation of the Modernised Customs Code. The study identifies and assesses the legal, IT technical and operational issues in view of the implementation of the Modernised Customs Code.

The aim of this study is to examine the challenges and conditions relating to the implementation of the Modernised Customs Code. The study identifies and assesses the legal, IT technical and operational issues in view of the implementation of the Modernised Customs Code.

Išorės autorius

Ine Lejeune, Ruud Tusveld, Dirk Aerts, Jos Verstraten, Nico Bogaerts and Michael Van de Velde (PwC Belgium / PwC the Netherlands)

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