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Rules of Origin in the new UK-Japan CEPA


The new UK-Japan comprehensive economic partnership (CEPA) will introduce more flexible rules for textile products, which will allow clothing producers to undergo a single process in the UK.

For example, under tariff preference, a clothing producer could sew together imported fabrics into a coat, and then export the final product to Japan under tariff preference, as long as 50% of the inputs are sourced domestically. (Under the EU-Japan EPA, clothing producers are required to undertake two or three processes in the UK, even if they sourced most of their inputs domestically).

This change may allow high-value producers of goods including knitwear, suits, gloves and coats to increase their exports to Japan.

The UK and Japan have agreed to measures that make the UK-Japan CEPA easy and predictable to use. For example, the UK-Japan CEPA allows self-certification of origin, which means that UK and Japanese exporters do not need a certificate from their customs authority.

Importers have the option of making the claim for preference, under the provision of ‘importer’s knowledge’, which provides an additional option for companies.

The UK’s Department for International Trade will be publishing joint guidance with Japan on the ‘importer’s knowledge’ article, which will give greater clarity and predictability for companies on this provision.

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