January 16, 2013 15:12
Russia adapting specific to ad valorem components of duties on some goods
MOSCOW. Jan 16 (Interfax) - Russia will bring the specific components of import duties on a number of goods in line with the ad valorem components in March, the Economic Development Ministry's chief trade negotiator, Maxim Medvedkov said in an interview with Interfax.
He said that under WTO rules countries can use combined duties, with ad valorem and specific components, but they must ensure equivalency in the level of tariff protection.
"We have the right to use a specific rate together with an ad valorem one, we have the right to use a specific rate instead of an ad valorem one, we have the right to use an ad valorem rate instead of the a specific one. But duties, regardless of their form, must be equivalent in terms of the level of tariff protection. And our partners believe that in some cases we have strayed from this rule of equivalency," Medvedkov said.
"In other words, if we hypothetically say that the duty is 20% but not less than 5 euros, then these 5 euros must ensure the preservation of tariff protection of 20%, but no more. That is, the ad valorem component must be more or equal to the specific," Medvedkov said.
He said this refers to certain agricultural, chemical and industrial goods, "from completely different groups, a little of everything."
"In the end, for about a third of positions we agreed that the specific component should be adapted, but for the rest we are explaining to our partners that there are no problems," Medvedkov said.
He said this issue is now going through the internal government approval process in Russia. "Then we'll present this to the Eurasian Economic Commission in order to change the UCT (universal customs tariff) and adapt the specific rates to ad valorem ones taking into account the prices of the world trade for this good. I think that there will be changes in the UCT in the spring, sometime in March," Medvedkov said.
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