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Rules of origin procedures applicable to exports from least developed countries

Date: 2011

Executive Unit: UNCTAD

As the focal point of the United Nations for the integrated treatment of trade and development and interrelated issues, the UNCTAD secretariat supports member States in assuring development gains from international trade, the trading system and trade negotiations, with a view to their beneficial and fuller integration into the world economy and to the achievement of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. Through intergovernmental deliberations and consensus-building, policy research and analysis, and technical cooperation and capacitybuilding support, UNCTAD’s work on trade negotiations and commercial diplomacy aims at enhancing the human, institutional and regulatory capacities of developing countries to analyse, formulate and implement appropriate trade policies and strategies in multilateral, interregional and regional trade negotiations.

 This paper is part of a new series called “Assuring Development Gains from the International Trading System and Trade Negotiations”. The targeted readership is government officials involved in trade negotiations, trade and trade-related policymakers and other stakeholders involved in trade negotiations and policymaking, including non-governmental organizations, private sector representatives and the research community.

 The objective of this report is to examine the rules of origin (RoO) for the least developed countries (LDCs), which is understood to mean both rule content and rule administration. This analysis will take as a given the current gap between LDCs that, on the whole, would understandably prefer to have a single value-added type of rule of origin for all their exports, and other members of the World Trade Organization (WTO), especially the Quad countries – Canada, countries in the European Union (EU), Japan and the United States of America – which generally seem content to maintain and/or expand their own national LDC rules of origin regimes. In light of these apparently irreconcilable differences, the primary focus of the analysis will be on alternate, second-best and practical options for all parties.

The publication is attached below:

Date: 2011
Executive Unit: UNCTA

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