Friday, September 15 2017 18:05
Alina Hovhannisyan

Petros Surmelis: Framework agreement between Armenia and EU does not provide for the abolition of customs duties

ArmInfo. The framework agreement with EU does not provide for the abolition of customs duties due to membership in the Armenia of EEU. On September 15, Head of the European Commission (EC) Directorate-General for Trade Petros Surmelis stated at the briefing on the fields of the exhibition "Europe in Armenia Expo". He also recalled that Armenia is already using the GSP + trade preferences regime, and over 6,000 items of goods are delivered to EU market under preferential terms.

Surmelis explained that the agreement will provide a number of opportunities for the Armenian business and provides for the improvement of conditions, in particular, related to sanitary and phytosanitary standards. "This will simplify the import of Armenian agricultural products to EU market and will strengthen their positions there," he said. At the same time, a new format of cooperation with EU presupposes an improvement in Armenia's investment environment, which will be implemented through simplification and transparency in the process of public procurement.

Surmelis also identified improvement of the competitive environment as priority items. In this vein, he announced the intention to create an agency that will deal exclusively with issues relating to the competitive environment. "The market must be competitive and fair, so that all its participants act according to uniform rules," he stressed.

To recall, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan and European Council President Donald Tusk announced on February 27 in Brussels the completion of the negotiations on the Armenia-EU agreement around the new framework agreement. And on March 21 in Yerevan, Armenia and EU initialed an agreement on a comprehensive and expanded partnership.

To note, in the work of the exhibition "Europe in Armenia Expo" pavilions of about 30 enterprises operating on Armenian market with European capital, as well as business-promoting structures. Within the framework of the event, business meetings and round tables will be held, where the participants will hold discussions on issues related to tourism, export, and business consulting. "Europe in Armenia Expo" is supported by the Armenian government and EU countries.

According to the National Statistical Service of Armenia, foreign trade turnover between Armenia and the EU in January-July 2017 amounted to $ 816.1 million with an annual growth of 22.9%. In particular, exports increased by 31.9% to $ 355.1 million, with imports increasing by 16.8% to $ 461 million.

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