Fruit and Vegetable Growers in B&H to face Sanctions from the EU?

December 28, 2015 12:30 PM

Trznica Dolac 071109The last session of the Council of Ministers will take place on Tuesday, December 29th, but so far it is unknown whether the last-minute proposal will be found to harmonize the trade part of the Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA), writes Vecernji List.

If that does not happen, B&H will be under new sanctions of the European Union or will be eliminated from so called Autonomous Trade Measures (ATM) which enabled producers from B&H export of certain goods to the EU market without paying customs duties. Alignment of this part of the agreement is one of the two key conditions B&H needs to fulfil in order to apply for membership in the European Union.

Chairman of the Council of Ministers, Denis Zvizdić, explained that B&H authorities are aware that they must take into account the fact that the Republic of Croatia entered the EU and B&H in this respect must follow SBA rules and procedures imposed by the EU and by which all other countries that have already become members of the EU, or those that have opened the chapter, as Montenegro or Serbia, have adapted their agreements.

Euro representative, Tonino Picula, in statement for “Vecernji list” pointed out that the adjustment of the trade part of the agreement will be a major test for the authorities of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

“Starting January 1, the EU will abolish B&H autonomous trade preferences if the country does not adapt to the SAA on free trade. This will be the first indicator of how strong pro-European forces are in overcoming the resistance of those who present B&H consider as a good framework for the realization of their interests”, Picula said.

Autonomous Trade Measures have been one of the instruments of the European Union intended for countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process. These measures aim to open the Western Balkan countries and facilitate access to the EU internal market through asymmetric trade liberalization (abolition of tariffs and quotas on the export to the EU).

(Source: photo jutarnji)

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