Free Flow of Goods
Free flow of goods is one of the principal means by which the aims of a single market and production base can be achieved. A single market for goods (and services) will also facilitate the development of production networks in the region and enhance ASEAN’s capacity to serve as a global production centre or as a part of the global supply chain.
Through ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA), ASEAN has achieved significant progress in the removal of tariffs. However, free flow of goods would require not only zero tariffs but the removal of non-tariff barriers as well. In addition, another major component that would facilitate free flow of goods is trade facilitation measures such as integrating customs procedures, establishing the ASEAN Single Window, continuously enhancing the Common Effective Preferential Tariffs (CEPT) Rules of Origin including its Operational Certification Procedures, and harmonising standards and conformance procedures.
The ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA)
The ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) has now been virtually established. ASEAN Member Countries have made significant progress in the lowering of intra-regional tariffs through the Common Effective Preferential Tariff (CEPT) Scheme for AFTA.
ASEAN Member Countries have also resolved to work on the elimination of non-tariff barriers. A work programme on the elimination of non-tariff barriers, which includes, among others, the process of verification and cross-notification; updating the working definition of Non-Tariff Measures (NTMs)/Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) in ASEAN; the setting-up of a database on all NTMs maintained by Member Countries; and the eventual elimination of unnecessary and unjustifiable non-tariff measures, is currently being finalized.
ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement
Common Effective Preferential Tariff (CEPT)