Workers package lychee for export (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam is joining Thailand, Laos, Indonesia and the Philippines in a pilot project for self-certification of goods origin, which is seen as an important step for Vietnamese businesses to make deeper inroads into countries participating in free trade agreements (FTAs).

2015 marked a milestone in Vietnam’s international economic integration process as the country signed four FTAs with its partners. Vietnam’s participation in FTAs greatly benefits domestic exporters as import tax is reduced or cut to zero among FTA member nations.

However, businesses need to meet the criteria for rules of goods origin if they wish to enjoy tax incentives.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) issued Circular No. 28/2015/TT-BCT on a pilot project for self-certification of goods origin under the ASEAN trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA), introducing businesses to relevant regulations.

Self-certification of goods origin means traders must make their own declaration of origins of goods for export goods on commercial invoices, instead of the usual certificate of origin (C/O) Form D (which is issued together with Circular No. 21/2010/TT-BCT and Circular No. 42/2014/TT-BCT).

Accordingly, the selected traders shall be issued the authorisation, which will be valid for one year from the date of issuance, by the Export and Import Administration under the MoIT.

Goods imported from the countries participating in the pilot project, shall be entitled to tariff incentives upon satisfying the following conditions: that the commercial invoice has the contents of origin declaration issued by the exporter, and the goods are among the accepted products listed by the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

The project is expected to help enterprises reduce the time of application for a C/O in the traditional way, and proactively release commercial invoices with contents of origin already declared, to facilitate their business and export.

It will also help businesses gain better understanding about the ‘rules of origin’ within FTAs, thus allowing businesses to take full advantage of the benefits of tariff reduction brought about from these deals.-VNA