The UK Government Border Operating Model (BOM), version 2
On October 8, 2020, the UK Government published version two of its proposed Border Operating Model (BOM). This follows on from an earlier version in July.
The BOM V.2 does not see many changes to the previous text but does come with added detail on many areas. Industry will have the opportunity to discuss the BOM with HMG in the coming weeks, and this remains a live document.
The 272-page document is very extensive, and on page eight there is a guide to the additional material which should make it a little more digestible.
Freeports proposals now looking more inclusive for UK ports
Responding to the Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s statement on Freeports the British Ports Association has welcomed the suggestion that the government was minded to be more inclusive regarding the number of ports that could potentially be designated.
The Chancellor also announced that the Freeports selection process will begin before the end of the year and will see the first English sites set up by the end of 2021.
Commenting, Richard Ballantyne, Chief Executive of the British Ports Association, which has been lobbying for a port zoning economic vision akin to the Freeports strategy, said:
“This is a welcome development and by being more inclusive in terms of the number of Freeports there might be, the Government can now explore how to better deliver on its levelling up agenda without picking regions over each other. Coastal communities are often in areas of high deprivation and have also experienced challenges resulting from the Coronavirus pandemic and lockdown so this potentially transformative policy will be welcomed in across a range of suitable locations.”
2020 Update of the EU Control List of Dual-Use Items
On 7 October 2020, the European Commission adopted the annual Delegated Regulation that updates the EU dual-use export control list in Annex I to Regulation (EC) No 428/2009. This brings it in line with the decisions taken within the framework of the international non-proliferation regimes and export control arrangements in 2019 and until end of February 2020 (in order to take into account the decisions taken in the Australia Group in February 2020). The majority of the changes result from amendments agreed at the Wassenaar Arrangement, but important changes also reflect the decisions taken in the Australia Group in February 2020.
The Summary of Amendments to Council Regulation (EU) No. 428/2009 for 2020 can be found here.
Abu Dhabi launches new incentives for importers
The General Administration of Customs in Abu Dhabi has introduced a new package of incentives and facilities to support importers and partners, said a media report.
The announcement came as part of the framework of Abu Dhabi’s initiatives aiming at supporting vital sectors and maintaining enterprises, particularly small and medium enterprises, and developing services provided to dealers, while increasing competitive capabilities in international trade, reported state news agency WAM.
Such incentives and facilities include the ability to replace bank guarantees with institutional guarantees for partners accredited at the General Administration of Customs in Abu Dhabi. These aim to mitigate financial burdens incurred by enterprises, and which are accredited by criteria based upon volume of an enterprise’s business, revenues and commitments.
Intertek awarded a contract by the National Food Safety Authority for Egypt
Intertek, a Total Quality Assurance provider to industries worldwide, has been awarded a contract by the National Food Safety Authority (NFSA) in Egypt to provide certification services in support of its Food Consignment Certification for exports of food and food contact materials to the country.
Food products and food contact materials are verified in the respective exporting countries to ensure they comply with Egyptian Food law and regulation, assuring Egypt’s citizens of the quality and safety of imported food.
Exporters of food products and food contact materials to Egypt are required to provide a Certificate of Inspection to achieve fast track Customs clearance. This certificate can be obtained from Intertek.
Egypt’s presidential facilities in auto sector attract investments
Amendments to certain categories of Egypt’s customs duties were recently made, following President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s ratification of Decree No 549 of 2020.
The amendments stipulate that customs duties will be 2% of the item’s value or import tax, whichever is less, on the imported components of equipment used in electric vehicle (EV) charging stations or natural gas stations. They have also been applied to components of equipment used for converting vehicles to run on natural gas, as well as equipment of new and renewable energy stations, and others.
The decision stipulates that if the local component percentage reaches 10% or more, the imported components are subject to a maximum 90% import tax.
It stated that the local manufacturing incentives are calculated on the basis of the percentage of the assembly line in each complementary industry separately, and it is up to the Minister of Trade and Industry to issue that decision.