Baker McKenzie’s Sanctions Blog published the alert titled EU adopts sixth package of sanctions against Russia/Belarus on 7 June 2022. Read the article via the link here. Please also visit our Sanctions Blog for the most recent updates.
On 10 May 2022, following a lengthy review and public comment period that began in October 2018, the European Commission adopted the new Vertical Block Exemption Regulation (VBER) accompanied by new Vertical Guidelines. The new VBER and Guidelines will come into force on 1 June 2022.
Representatives of the EU and New Zealand held negotiations from 14 to 31 March 2022, discussing most areas of the future free trade agreement between the jurisdictions. According to a two-pager published by the European Commission, EU’s request to be exempt from New Zealand’s import customs fees is the only outstanding element in the text as far as the topic “Trade in goods” is concerned.
In 2014, Ukraine and the EU signed a free-trade agreement in the form of an Association Agreement that contains a Title IV which relates to trade and trade related matters and has been applied since 1 January 2016. Article 29 of the Association Agreement provides for the progressive elimination of customs duties in accordance with the schedules included in the agreement and envisages the possibility to accelerate and broaden such elimination. Following a request of Ukraine, the European Commission has decided to put forward a proposal introducing the following trade-liberalising measures for products originating in Ukraine.
Baker McKenzie’s Sanctions Blog published the alert titled Russia imposes blocking sanctions on foreign energy companies on 12 May 2022. Read the article via the link here. Please also visit our Sanctions Blog for the most recent updates.
On 21 September 2021, the European Commission published its proposal for a new EU scheme of generalised preferences, also called GSP. The GSP provides preferential access for products to the EU market originating in developing countries without the need for these countries to open their markets to EU exports in exchange. This preference shall be granted in accordance with the “Enabling Clause” set in Article 2a of the General Agreement on Tariff and Trade, which provides a permanent exemption from the Most Favoured Nation (non-discrimination) for developed countries to unilaterally grant elimination or reductions of the tariff paid on imports from developing countries which share the same trade, financing and development needs.
On 7 April 2022, the ECJ issued its decision in the case C‑489/20 (UB vs Kauno teritorinė muitinė). UB arranged the unlawful introduction of cigarettes from Belarus to Lithuania. In September 2016, 6000 packages of cigarettes were thrown across the State border to be picked by vehicle on the other side. Lithuanian border officials managed to detain the vehicle carrying the cigarettes that same day.
The new Clinical Trials Regulation became applicable on 31 January 2022, following achievement of the full functionality by the new Clinical Trials Information System, bringing more transparency into the area of clinical trials.
Baker McKenzie’s Sanctions Blog published the alert titled The EU adopts a fifth package of sectoral and individual measures targeting Russia and Belarus on 11 April 2022. Read the article via the link here. Please also visit our Sanctions Blog for the most recent updates.
On 31st of March 2022, the Wise Persons on Challenges Facing the Customs Union (WPG) released its report on the future of the EU customs union. The WPG has been appointed by the Commissioner Gentiloni to reflect on the development of innovative ideas and concepts. This report aims to contribute to a general inter-institutional debate on the future of the customs union.