The Philippines continues to enjoy lower tariffs when exporting certain products to member states of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU).
The EEU, which includes Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz and Armenia, retained the Philippines among the developing beneficiary countries subject to preferential tariffs under its Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) starting October 12.
This, even after the EEU Council decided to reduce the number of developing countries subject to preferential tariffs, which are preferentially applied to 75 percent of the basic tariff rate, from 103 countries/regions to just 29 countries.
Countries/regions that have transitioned from preferential tariffs to basic tariffs include Brazil, Vietnam, Hong Kong, India, China, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Turkey and South Africa.
Compared to these countries, the Philippines continued to enjoy lower tariffs when exporting to EEU members.
In an earlier statement, the Department of Trade and Industry-Export Marketing Bureau (DTI-EMB) said products covered by the EEU GSP are eligible for a 25-percent discount on customs duties. These include food, furniture, and industrial goods.
Food products include meat, fish, fruits, coffee, cacao, coconut products, sauces, and condiments. Furniture, gifts, and houseware in the list are articles of wood, basket ware, artificial flowers, statuettes, ceramics, and imitation jewelry. Also included are industrial goods like natural rubber.
Meanwhile, the least developed countries that apply preferential tariffs, which are exempt from tariffs, have also been reduced from 50 to 48.
Vanuatu has moved to a regular favored country and Equatorial Guinea has been removed from the list.
The EEU includes high-income countries with gross national income (GNI) per capita of over $12,535 and high- and middle-income countries ($4,046- $ 12,535) classified by the World Bank as criteria for preferential countries/regions.