Vol. 149, No. 6 — March 25, 2015
SOR/2015-62 March 13, 2015
Order Amending the Schedule to the Customs Tariff (Extension of General Preferential Tariff to Burma)
P.C. 2015-308 March 12, 2015
Whereas Burma is a country that is a beneficiary of the Most-Favoured-Nation Tariff under the Customs Tariff (see footnote a);
And whereas the Governor in Council is of the opinion that Burma is a developing country;
Therefore, to extend entitlement to the General Preferential Tariff to all eligible goods that originate in Burma, His Excellency the Governor General in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Finance, pursuant to paragraph 34(1)(a) (see footnote b) of the Customs Tariff (see footnote c), makes the annexed Order Amending the Schedule to the Customs Tariff (Extension of General Preferential Tariff to Burma).
ORDER AMENDING THE SCHEDULE TO THE CUSTOMS TARIFF (EXTENSION OF GENERAL PREFERENTIAL TARIFF TO BURMA)
1. The List of Countries and Applicable Tariff Treatments set out in the schedule to the Customs Tariff (see footnote 1) is amended by adding, in the column “GPT”, the symbol “X” opposite the reference to “Burma” in the column “Country Name”.
COMING INTO FORCE
2. This Order comes into force on the day on which it is registered.
REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT
(This statement is not part of the orders.)
Canada extends unilateral preferential tariff rates to imports from developing and least developed countries through two tariff treatments:
- the General Preferential Tariff (GPT) offers tariff rates that are lower than Most-Favoured-Nation (MFN) Tariff rates to goods imported from developing countries identified in the Schedule to the Customs Tariff; and
- the Least Developed Country Tariff (LDCT) offers duty-free access on the importation into Canada of all products (with the exception of supply-managed agricultural goods) from least developed countries, as identified by the United Nations and listed in the Schedule to the Customs Tariff.
Burma’s eligibility for the GPT and the LDCT was removed in 1997 as part of a global concerted response to the human rights situation in that country (see SOR/97-398). In recent years, there have been positive developments in Burma, notably elections in 2010 that led to a transition to civilian rule, the release of political prisoners, economic reforms, and the introduction of new laws to protect freedom of association and assembly.
In light of these positive developments, countries are gradually easing sanctions and normalizing trade relations with Burma. In that regard, Canada has already taken a number of actions towards normalizing relations with Burma. On April 24, 2012, Canada eased economic sanctions taken against Burma. Canada has also opened an embassy in Yangon and appointed its first-ever resident ambassador to Burma. Reinstating GPT and LDCT eligibility for Burma is consistent with these actions.
Extend entitlement to the GPT and LDCT tariff treatments to imports originating from Burma.
The Order Amending the Schedule to the Customs Tariff (Extension of General Preferential Tariff to Burma) extends entitlement to the GPT treatment to imports originating from Burma.
The Order Amending the Schedule to the Customs Tariff (Extension of Least Developed Country Tariff to Burma) extends entitlement to the LDCT treatment to imports originating from Burma.
The “One-for-One” Rule does not apply to these orders, as there is no change in administrative costs to business.
Small business lens
The small business lens does not apply to these orders, as there are no costs imposed on business.
The orders were published in the Canada Gazette, Part I, on November 8, 2014, followed by a 30-day comment period. All submissions received were in support, and there was no opposition.
The reinstatement by Canada of GPT and LDCT entitlement for Burma will help support the continued progress towards reform in that country. The European Union reintegrated Burma into its preferential tariff regime, the Generalized System of Preferences, in 2013.
Based on current trading patterns, it is estimated that annual customs duties foregone by the federal government from providing Burma with GPT and LDCT eligibility will be approximately $240,000.
Implementation, enforcement and service standards
The Canada Border Services Agency will administer these changes as part of its responsibility for the administration of, and compliance with, customs and tariff legislation and regulations.
International Trade Policy Division
Department of Finance