Ambassador assures Brexit will not stop Philippines -UK trade
Ehda M. Dagooc (The Freeman) - May 25, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — The British Embassy in the Philippines has assured Filipino exporters, including Cebuano export traders that easy access to trade exchanges will continue, similar to the European Union Generalized Scheme of Preferences Plus (EU GSP+) if and when the United Kingdom leaves the European Union (EU).

British Ambassador to the Philippines Daniel Pruce made this assurance during his recent visit to Cebu to allay fears on possible export policy changes that used to be under the EU rules.

“When UK leaves EU we will come out of the European Union Generalized Scheme of Preferences Plus (EU GSP+),” Pruce said explaining that while UK will no longer implement the EU GSP+, however, it has already a similar system that would allow exporters to easily access trade in the UK.

“As soon as we will leave EU we will establish our own trade preference scheme that will maintain the same level offered in the current EU GSP+,” the Ambassador assured.

Thus, Brexit issue has no (negative) impact to exporters, in fact UK will continue to strengthen its trade relationship with the Philippines.

The Philippines is one of the beneficiaries of the EU GSP+ where 6,000 export products to any of the 28-member countries of the EU are at zero tariff.

Over 3,000 export goods destined to the EU are also zero tariff under the same scheme.

Great Britain accounts for less than 10 percent of total Philippine exports to the EU with almost 11 percent of Philippine exports to the EU under the GSP+ going to the UK, and 35 percent of total Philippine exports to the UK for 2017 being made under GSP+.

The Philippines’ exports to the UK include costume and fine jewelry, holiday decor, houseware, garments, furniture, seaweed, footware and leather goods.

Brexit (British Exit) is the withdrawal of the United Kingdom (UK) from the European Union (EU). Following a referendum held on 23 June 2016 in which 51.9 per cent of those voting supported leaving the EU, the Government invoked Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union, starting a two-year process which was due to conclude with the UK's exit on 29 March 2019 – a deadline which has since been extended to 31 October 2019.

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