Exceptional trade measures
As a result of the exceptional trade measures adopted by the European Union (EU) for the countries and territories of the Western Balkans, almost all of the products originating in those countries can be imported freely into the EU without customs duties and without quantitative restrictions. This favourable trade arrangement contributes to the Stabilisation and Association process for the Western Balkans.
Council Regulation (EC) No 1215/2009 of 30 November 2009 introducing exceptional trade measures for countries and territories participating in or linked to the European Union’s Stabilisation and Association process (codified version).
The Western Balkan countries benefit from exceptional trade measures for their imports into the European Union (EU). These countries and territories are part of the Stabilisation and Association process.
The exceptional trade measures shall apply until 31 December 2010.
Products originating in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Kosovo shall be imported into the European Union without customs duties * or charges having equivalent effect and without quantitative restrictions * or measures having equivalent effect.
In addition, these trade preferences shall apply to certain agricultural products.
Conditions for entitlement
To benefit from the preferential measures, countries and territories must:
- comply with the definition of originating product provided for in Regulation (EEC) No 2454/93; the products must have been wholly manufactured or have undergone sufficient processing in the country or territory;
- undertake not to increase the level of taxes or restrictions on products imported from the EU;
- combat fraud by means of administrative cooperation with the EU.
Beneficiaries should also engage in effective economic reforms and in cooperation with other countries concerned by the Stabilisation and Association process, in particular through the creation of a regional free trade area.
The Commission may suspend the trade preferences in whole or in part if a country fails to comply with its obligations.
Agricultural and fishery products
The customs duties applicable to certain fishery products and certain wines shall be suspended, within the limits defined in Annex I.
The customs duties applicable to imports of veal (baby beef) originating in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Kosovo are defined in Annex II. The volume of the total annual tariff quota * is 11 475 tonnes, distributed as follows:
- 1 500 tonnes (carcass weight) for products originating in Bosnia and Herzegovina;
- 9 175 tonnes (carcass weight) for products originating in the customs territories of Serbia and Kosovo.
Imports of sugar products originating in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Kosovo shall be subject to annual tariff quotas:
- 12 000 tonnes (net weight) for products originating in Bosnia and Herzegovina;
- 180 000 tonnes (net weight) for products originating in the customs territories of Serbia and Kosovo.
Regulation (EC) No 1234/2007 establishes procedures for the implementation of tariff quotas in relation to these products.
The Commission may take protective measures if imports of agricultural and fishery products cause serious disturbance to the EU’s internal market.
|Act||Entry into force – expiry date||Deadline for transposition in the Member States||Official Journal|
Regulation (EC) No 1215/2009
4.1.2010 – 31.12.2010
OJ L 328 of 15.12.2009