Colombo, July 23 (newsin.asia): The UK Government launched a consultation on new trading rules on July 19. The UK Developing Countries Trading Scheme (DCTS) is a major opportunity to grow free and fair trade with 70 qualifying countries including Sri Lanka.
The proposed scheme will mean more opportunity and less bureaucracy. This includes improvements such as lower tariffs and simpler rules of origin requirements for countries exporting to the UK, allowing countries to diversify their exports and grow their economies, the British High Commission said in a release.
The British High Commissioner in Sri Lanka H.E. Sarah Hulton said: “The proposed DCTS scheme signals the UK’s appetite to promote global free and fair trade, as well as demonstrating our commitment to Sri Lanka, by enabling Sri Lankan businesses to access the UK market more easily. Bilateral trade between the UK and Sri Lanka stood at GBP1.2 billion in 2020, and there is room for growth. I encourage people here in Sri Lanka to contribute to this important consultation, which is open to all”.
The consultation on the UK’s new scheme runs for eight weeks and seeks the view of all sectors of society, including businesses, the public, civil society groups, consumers, associations, partner governments and any other interested stakeholders. Currently the UK operates a similar scheme rolled over from the EU, but as an independent trading nation can now take a simpler, more generous, pro-growth approach to trading with developing countries.
The UK’s International Trade Secretary Liz Truss said: “Trade fundamentally empowers people and has done more than any single policy in history to lift millions of people around the world out of poverty. Now the UK is an independent trading nation we have a huge opportunity do things differently, taking a more liberal, pro-trade approach that leads to growth and opportunity. Countries like Bangladesh and Vietnam have proven it’s possible to trade your way to better living standards, and our new Developing Countries Trading Scheme will help others do the same.”
Responses to the consultation can be given via GOV.UK until the closing date of 12 September 2021.
The UK Developing Countries Trading Scheme will apply to 47 countries in the Least Developed Country Framework (LDCF) and 23 additional countries classified by the World Bank as low-income and lower-middle-income countries. Other low-income and lower-middle-income countries are not included in the scheme because they benefit from preferential terms offered by free trade agreements with the UK.
• Bangladesh and Vietnam reported changes in poverty are based on the international poverty line of $1.90 and $3.20 respectively per person, per day in 2011 Purchasing Power Parity dollars.
• Growth in exports to the UK reported for Bangladesh and Vietnam are in nominal terms.
• Sources of statistics: ONS UK trade in goods and services, non-seasonally adjusted, Q4 2020; World Bank World Development Indicators, May 2021; World Bank Macro Poverty Outlook: April 2021; World Bank “Bangladesh: Reducing Poverty and Sharing Prosperity” (published 2018).
The consultation will offer respondents the opportunity to provide views on:
• Simplifying rules of origin requirements for least developed countries;
• Reducing tariffs for low income and lower middle-income countries;
• Amendments to the approach to goods graduation, which suspends preferential rates on particular goods from certain countries on the basis of their competitiveness;
• Amendments to the conditions and reporting requirements that enable a low-income or lower-middle-income country to benefit from more generous provisions through the values-based incentivised arrangement;
• and simplifying the conditions that could lead to variation or suspension of preferences for any beneficiary country.