On December 22, 2012, the Canadian government solicited views on
the withdrawal of general preferential tariff (GPT) status from
imports of beneficiary countries. It was proposed that the
withdrawal would be discriminatory to the detriment of countries
that are classified for two consecutive years as high income or
upper-middle income economies according to the latest World Bank
income classifications, or have a share of world exports that is
equal to or greater than one percent for two consecutive years
according to the latest World Trade Organization trade statistics.
After a period of consultation, Canada proposes, in its 2013 Budget
that it move forward with and withdraw GPT benefits from 72 high
income or export competitive countries, including all G-20 nations.
Changes will take effect on January 1, 2015, and will be extended
for a period of 10 years. The economic condition analysis will be
applied every two years and will be applied prospectively.
Countries benefiting from Least Developed Country Tariff status
for textile and apparel that is partially contingent on GPT
originating inputs will not suffer as they will continue to be able
to rely on amended Rules of Origin which safeguard this
It was stated by the government that the purpose of these
changes is to reflect the significant shifts in the income levels
and trade competitiveness of certain developing countries.
Noteworthy from the elimination list are: Argentina, Brazil, Cuba,
China, Hong Kong, Russia, the Republic of Korea, and Singapore.
Query whether this will fuel a ramping up of FTA negotiations
between South Korea and Canada?
This was seen coming for some time given shifting tides of
global trade/economics. In addition, many of the eliminated
countries benefit from other tariff relief regimes. This should be
taken into account by importers into Canada for future sourcing
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While that agreement mandated export measures on Canadian softwood lumber exports destined for the United States, it also protected those lumber exports from the potential imposition of onerous import measures by the U.S.
On September 29, 2016, the Supreme Court of Canada issued its first tariff classification decision since Canada signed the International Convention on the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System in 1998.
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