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          WCO welcomes International Certificate of Origin Accreditation Chain

          • Paris, 25 January 2013

          During its 31st session in Brussels on 22 January, 35 member countries present for the World Customs Organization’s (WCO) Technical Committee on Rules of Origin welcomed the International Certificate of Origin (CO) Accreditation Chain launched on 28 September 2012 by the ICC World Chambers Federation (WCF).

          WCF Director Anthony Parkes presented the ICC WCF International Certificate of Origin Accreditation Chain

          WCF Director Anthony Parkes presented the chain at the session and underscored how it will reinforce the global integrity of COs harmonize certification standards and processes.

          “This initiative consolidates the unique role of chambers as the competent, trusted third party in the delivery of COs,” he said. “The accreditation programme also mirrors similar initiatives of capacity building of Customs authorities, with a principle objective of the chain to ensure consistency across the global network of chambers and their processes in the issuance of non-preferential certificates of origin.” Luc Dardaud, Trade Facilitation Manager at the Paris Chamber of Commerce, presented his department and explained the reasons why his chamber was now joining the CO Chain.

          ICC has observer status at the WCO TCRO whose members, including China, Spain, Togo and the US, responded positively to the news on the initiative.

          In the implementation of the CO Chain, ICC WCF will establish a CO verification website listing all COs issued by the accredited chamber members. Available to Customs authorities, it will ensure faster online authenticity confirmation, providing greater security against false documentation.

          Following Mr Parkes presentation to the TCRO an article on the CO Chain is due for publication in the February edition of the WCO News Magazine, distributed free of charge in English and in French to Customs administrations, international organizations, non-governmental organizations, the business community and other interested readers.

          The day after the TCRO session, WCO convened an Origin workshop, gathering experts from the World Trade Organization, the European Union, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, Customs agencies, ICC and several of its chamber members.

          The ICC WCF delegation to the WCO TCRO and workshop sessions included chamber representatives from Belgium, Brazil, China, Croatia, France, the Netherlands, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.

          Christophe Coulie, Legal Adviser at the Federation of Belgium Chambers of Commerce and Paul Wrighting, National Trade Services Manager at the British Chamber of Commerce spoke of their respective electronic CO platform systems. They demonstrated the various advantages for exporters and for chambers, and called for support from all Customs authorities to accept electronic documents.

          Carlos Busquets, Deputy Director of ICC Policy and Business Practice, took part in the discussion and highlighted upcoming ICC initiatives to promote multilateralism and a better understanding of Rules of Origin. This included a briefing on the ICC Business World Trade Agenda, an initiative of ICC and the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry to drive World Trade Organization multilateral trade talks out of an 11-year deadlock and “beyond Doha”.

          To read the official note sent to all customs administrations and to learn more about the CO Chain, visit the International CO Chain.

          Get a copy of the ICC WCF International Certificate of Origin Guidelines.

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