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On 12 March 2021, the Official Journal published Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/442 of 11 March 2021 making the exportation of certain products subject to the production of an export authorisation, which requires an export authorisation to export (or re-export after such goods have been subject to manufacturing operations including filling and packaging within the customs territory of the Union) vaccines against SARS-related coronaviruses (SARS-CoV species) currently falling under CN code 3002 20 10, irrespective of their packaging…

On 30 October 2020, the Swiss Federal Council announced that the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) concluded between the states of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and Ecuador enters into force on 1 November. To that end, on 18 September, the Federal Council adopted the necessary amendments to the ordinances implementing the customs duty concessions set out in the agreement. This modern agreement will help to boost trade relations between the EFTA states and…

On 21 September 2020, the Federal Customs Administration announced that the EFTA-Ecuador Free Trade Agreement will enter into force on 1 November 2020. Some points: The EFTA-Ecuador Agreement provides for the cumulation of originating products between EFTA countries and Ecuador. Cumulation with input materials from Colombia and Peru is also permitted. These input materials must be originating products under the relevant agreement which are processed or incorporated into a product in EFTA countries or Ecuador;…

On 24 July 2020, the European Commission announced that at a meeting of the WTO Trade Policy Review Body, the European Union, backed by ten other members of the World Trade Organization (Australia, Canada, Chile, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, Republic of Korea and Switzerland), submitted a joint communication calling for more transparency in respect of trade-related measures introduced by partners around the world in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The aim is to…

On March 17, 2020, US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) published in the Federal Register a document notifying the public of certain arrival restrictions. The document announces the decision of the Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) to direct all flights to the United States carrying persons who have recently traveled from, or were otherwise present within, the countries of the Schengen Area to arrive at one of the United…

On January 24, 2020, 17 WTO members issued a statement agreeing to establish a temporary system for appealing WTO disputes. They reached an agreement during the recent World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The WTO members include Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, the European Union, Guatemala, South Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Singapore, Switzerland and Uruguay. Canada and the EU had earlier established a separate interim appeals procedure. The statement indicated…

On 21 October 2019, the EU announced that the EU and Norway notified the World Trade Organization (WTO) of their interim appeal arbitration arrangement pursuant to Article 25 of the Disputes Settlement Understanding in the event that the Appellate Body is not able to hear appeals of panel reports in any future dispute between the European Union and Norway due to an insufficient number of its members. In such cases the European Union and Norway…

On 21 February, 2019, the Department for International Trade (DIT) issued guidance entitled, Existing trade agreements if the UK leaves the EU without a deal, which sets out the status of those agreements (free trade agreements, economic partnership agreements, association agreements and customs union) that may not be in place by exit day. It also links to trade agreements that have been signed and mutual recognition agreements that have been signed.

The Federal Council announced that on 16 December 2018, Federal Councillor Johann N. Schneider-Ammann, the economics minister of Liechtenstein and representatives of Iceland and Norway signed a free trade agreement with Indonesia’s minister for trade, Enggartiasto Lukita. Under the agreement, 98 percent of Swiss exports to Indonesia, the fourth most populous country in the world, will be exempt from customs duties over the coming years. Technical barriers to trade will be removed, market access for Swiss service providers made easier and bilateral economic relations in general improved. The EFTA states will collectively become Indonesia’s primary trading partner in Europe.

On 18 July 2018, the Official Journal published Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1013 of 17 July 2018 imposing provisional safeguard measures with regard to imports of certain steel products. On 26 March 2018, the Commission published a Notice of Initiation of a safeguard investigation concerning imports of 26 steel product categories (2018/C 111/10) in the Official Journal. The Commission decided to initiate the investigation in the light of sufficient evidence that imports of those products might cause or threaten to cause serious injury to the Union producers concerned. On 28 June, the investigation was extended to two additional product categories. There was also a high risk of further increase of imports resulting from trade diversion due to the measures against imports of steel adopted by the United States under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 (‘Section 232’). The 28 product categories (‘the product concerned’ or the ‘product categories concerned’) are all covered by the steel surveillance mechanism introduced by the Commission in May 2016. They are also subject to the US tariff measures under Section 232.