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Europe’s Generalised Scheme of Preferences

20 Jul 2023
All Committees
Trade & External Affairs

AmCham EU is deeply concerned about the breakdown of the trilogue negotiations on the reform of the Generalised Scheme of Preferences (GSP). This arrangement is the crown jewel of EU trade policy. It removes import duties for vital raw materials and finished goods entering into the EU market from vulnerable developing countries, which helps developing countries alleviate poverty and create jobs based on international values and principles.

Through the GSP, countries become more competitive and can develop diversified domestic industries for exports. This growth in trade creates high-standard jobs, reduces poverty and implements high labour standards. By promoting the implementation of key international conventions, GSP provisions contribute to advancing sustainable development, increasing environmental protection and encouraging good governance. In turn, European consumers are offered a wider variety of more affordable choices, while businesses in Europe can operate more easily and become more competitive in the global marketplace by reducing costs of imported inputs.

Failure to approve the new proposal or extend the current scheme will undermine the EU’s credibility in trade policy, disrupt longstanding trade relationship with developing countries and introduce significant uncertainty for thousands of companies and millions of workers worldwide.

With the current GSP Regulation set to expire on 31 December 2023, we urge the Council and the European Parliament to quickly approve the proposal to extend the current scheme without further amendments.