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Baotou customs promotes use of 'certificates of origin' to aid exporters



Baotou customs workers check imported equipment parts. [Photo/baotounews.com.cn]

According to Baotou customs, in the first seven months of 2020, local customs officials issued a total of 903 export certificates of origin – a significant boost to the city's export expansion ambitions, with visas amounting to $227 million.

Among them, 631 certificates of origin related to free trade agreements with countries involved in Belt and Road Initiative (BRI countries) were issued, with a visa amount of $180 million, and enterprises can enjoy approximately $5.41 million in tariff preferences from importing countries.

Steel products, rare earth products and cashmere products exported from Baotou are mainly sold to BRI countries. Nations and regions involved in the BRI are among the most important markets for export enterprises in Baotou city.

According to Baotou customs workers, the growing use of certificates of origin will provide a key stimulus for Baotou's exports in the coming years.

A certificate of origin is a document issued by a specific agency in the exporting country, certifying that the goods were made or produced in that country or region. Because it can prove the nationality of merchandise, it is also called the "economic passport" of goods in international trade.

It is the basis for importing countries to implement preferential trade measures – as well as to mete out non-preferential trade policies such as anti-dumping and countervailing measures, safeguard measures, country-specific quantitative restrictions and tariff quotas.

As China signs and implements free trade agreements with more and more countries and regions, the certificate of origin has become an increasingly important document to allow exported goods to enjoy smooth customs clearance upon arrival at the importing country.

Baotou customs has actively encouraged export companies to use the "economic passport" to alleviate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic this year and help foreign trade companies speed up the resumption of work and production.

The customs bureau has moved to improve the efficiency of its customs visa operations and has implemented streamlined measures such as self-printing of certificates of origin.