The Ministry of Commerce and Industry signed Monday with the Qatar Chamber a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for cooperation to facilitate procedures for the electronic issuance of the Arab certificate of origin, within the framework of joint national efforts to support local industries and develop the business environment in the country by achieving integration between the various electronic systems of government agencies.
The MoU was signed by Assistant Undersecretary for Commerce and Industry Affairs Saleh Majed Al Khulaifi and Director General of the Qatar Chamber Saleh Hamad Al Sharqi.
Under the MoU, the Qatar Chamber is authorized as the issuing and certifying body to put the Ministry of Commerce and Industry’s seals and signatures on the electronically issued Arab certificate of origin. The Chamber also undertakes the development of a mechanism for issuing the certificate which it provides to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to implement it through the electronic link between the two parties.
The provisions of this MoU apply to the Arab certificate of origin only, provided that it is verified that the products are of Arab origin and not other foreign products, after making sure that all documents are met.
Speaking to the press after the signing, Saleh Al Khulaifi said that the MoU with the Chamber represents an important step in consolidating Arab economic integration and supporting intra-regional trade with the countries of the region, as it aims to enhance the competitiveness of national products and support exports through their expansion into regional markets and allowing national companies to take advantage of the commercial opportunities available in the markets of Arab countries.
He pointed out that the electronic issuance of the Arab certificate of origin plays an important role in reducing costs and contributes to shortening the procedures related to the registration processes, the application for obtaining the certificate, the delivery of certificates and the verification of goods of origin, in addition to contributing to the reduction of many customs restrictions that would impede the movement of intra-Arab trade.
For his part, Saleh bin Hamad Al Sharqi said that the application of the electronically issued Arab certificates of origin was a proposal put forward by the delegation of the State of Qatar during a meeting on certificates of origin at the Arab League five years ago.
He added that the movement of Arab goods in general will exceed the issue of floors in the ports, thanks to this step, which will have an important role in enhancing intra-Arab trade, as well as facing urgent problems and solving them electronically, which saves effort and time for everyone.
The application of the electronically issued certificates of origin comes within the framework of implementing the recommendations of the first meeting of the permanent technical committee for the rules of Arab origin in this regard, which was held last January, as well as the recommendations of the implementation and follow-up committee at its 48th meeting regarding the transition to the exchange of certificates of origin issued electronically, which was approved by the Economic and Social Council of the Arab League in its regular session that was held in February 2020.