31 December 1995
ON TARIFFS AND TRADESpecial Distribution
Tokyo Round Committee on Customs Valuation
FIFTEENTH ANNUAL REVIEW OF THE IMPLEMENTATION AND
OPERATION OF THE TOKYO ROUND AGREEMENT
ON IMPLEMENTATION OF ARTICLE VII OF THE
GENERAL AGREEMENT ON TARIFFS AND TRADE 1947
Background Document by the Secretariat
Article 26 of the Agreement on Implementation of Article VII of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1947 provides that "the Committee shall review annually the implementation and operation of this Agreement taking into account the objectives thereof".
The main objectives of the Agreement are those listed in the Preamble. The annual review of the Committee should cover the implementation and operation of the Agreement in the light of its objectives and specific obligations.
At its meeting of 14 October 1995, the Committee conducted its fifteenth annual review on the basis of document VAL/W/66. The present document takes into account the points made during that review and the work of the Committee at that meeting as a whole.
The information contained in this document covers the period from 7 December 1994 to 31 December 1995.
The contents of this document are as follows:
1. Accessions, acceptances, reservations and observer status 3
2. Composition of the Tokyo Round Committee on Customs Valuation 4
3. Meetings of the Committee 5
4. National legislation presented 5
5. Amendments, interpretations and rectifications of the
text of the agreement 5
6. Other decisions taken by the Committee 6
7. Technical assistance 6
8. Information and advice from the Technical Committee on
Customs Valuation (hereinafter referred to as the "Technical
Committee"), and general report on the Technical Committee 6
9. Substantial difficulties encountered by Parties in
applying the Agreement 6
10. Consultation and dispute settlement 6
11. Panellists 7
12. Other matters relating to implementation 7
13. Annual report to the CONTRACTING PARTIES 7
14. General appreciation of experience with implementation
and operation of the Agreement 7
Annex I 8
Annex II 9
1. ACCESSIONS, ACCEPTANCES, RESERVATIONS AND OBSERVER STATUS
(a) Status of accessions and acceptances
The number of Signatories is thirty-three.
The United States withdrew from the Agreement on 1 March 1995.
(b) Terms of acceptance
In regard to the terms of acceptance, the special provisions available for developing countries have been invoked as follows:
(i) Article 21.1 (delayed application of the provisions of the Agreement)
Morocco (4 July 1998)
Peru (1 April 1999)
(ii) Article 21.2 (delayed application of the computed value method)
Mexico (10 March 1996)
Morocco (4 July 2001)
Turkey (12 February 1997)
Peru (1 April 2002)
(iii) Protocol, paragraph I:3 (reservation concerning minimum values)
(iv) Protocol, paragraph I:4 (reservation concerning reversal of sequential order of Articles 5 and 6)
Argentina Malawi Turkey
Brazil Mexico Zimbabwe
(v) Protocol, paragraph I:5 (reservation concerning application of Article 5:2 whether or not the importer so requests)
Argentina India Peru
Brazil Mexico Turkey
Colombia2 Morocco Zimbabwe
1Agreement has not yet entered into force - it is subject to ratification.
2Agreement has entered into force provisionally.
2.COMPOSITION OF THE TOKYO ROUND COMMITTEE ON CUSTOMS VALUATION
Chairman: Mr. P. Pale_ka (Czech Republic)
European Economic Community
and its member States
Korea, Republic of
China, People's Republic of
Trinidad and Tobago
(ii) International Organizations:
World Customs Organization (permanent observer)
1At its meeting of 12 May 1995, the Committee agreed not to elect a Vice-Chairperson.
2Subject to ratification.
3Applying on a provisional basis.
4"Yugoslavia" in this document refers to the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
3. MEETINGS OF THE COMMITTEE
Since the fourteenth annual review, the Committee has held two meetings on 12 May 1995 and on 24 October 1995. The minutes of these meetings are contained in documents VAL/M/35 and VAL/M/36, respectively.
4. NATIONAL LEGISLATION PRESENTED
(i) Texts of national legislation
Article 25 of the Agreement requires each Party to inform the Committee of any changes in its laws and regulations relevant to the Agreement and in the administration of such laws and regulations. At its first meeting, the Committee agreed on procedures for the submission of the complete texts of national legislation (VAL/M/1, paragraph 37).
Since the fourteenth review, no additional text has been submitted.
Annex I contains a complete list of national legislations that have been communicated to the Committee.
(ii) Checklist of issues
At its second meeting, the Committee had decided that Parties should provide written responses to a checklist of issues concerning their national laws, regulations etc. (VAL/M/2, paragraph 52). At its meeting of 13 November 1985, the Committee had added two questions to the checklist (VAL/M/14, paragraph 55).
Since the fourteenth annual review the following additional reply has been submitted:
Annex I contains a list of the replies that have been communicated to the Committee.
(iii) Examination of national legislations
At its meeting of 12 May 1995, the Committee agreed to conclude its examination of the recent amendments to the legislation of Argentina contained in document VAL/1/Add.22/Suppl.4. The Committee also agreed to conclude its examination of the legislation of Turkey contained in document VAL/1/Add.29. With respect to the Mexican legislation circulated in document VAL/1/Add.25/Suppl.3, the Committee took note of the various points raised and the explanations furnished and agreed to revert to this agenda item at the next meeting.
At its meeting of 24 October 1995, the Committee pursued its examination of the Mexican legislation circulated in document VAL/1/Add.25/Suppl.3. The Committee took note of the various points raised and the explanations furnished, and agreed to revert to this agenda item at the next meeting of the WTO Committee.
5. AMENDMENTS, INTERPRETATIONS AND RECTIFICATIONS OF THE TEXT OF THE AGREEMENT
During the year under review the Committee has not dealt with any of these matters.
6. OTHER DECISIONS TAKEN BY THE COMMITTEE
At its meeting of 24 October 1995, the Committee agreed to terminate the Agreement on 1 January 1996, unless, in the light of unforeseen circumstances, the Parties to the Agreement decide to postpone the date of termination by no more than one year.
7. TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE
Technical assistance aimed at providing information to assist countries in their consideration of joining the Agreement and at helping countries in their preparations for the application of the Agreement has continued to be a matter of high priority to Parties, the Committee on Customs Valuation and the Technical Committee. Technical assistance is being made available to both developing country Parties and other developing countries interested in the Agreement.
Information on technical assistance activities relating to the Agreement is contained in working document G/VAL/W/4 which reproduces information contained in WCO document 39.708.
8. INFORMATION AND ADVICE FROM THE TECHNICAL COMMITTEE ON CUSTOMS VALUATION (HEREINAFTER REFERRED TO AS THE "TECHNICAL COMMITTEE"), AND GENERAL REPORT ON THE TECHNICAL COMMITTEE
(i) Meetings of the Technical Committee
Detailed oral reports on the work of the Twenty-Ninth (13-17 March 1995) and Thirtieth (2 October 1995) Sessions of the Technical Committee of the World Customs Organization were presented to the meetings of the Committee on Customs Valuation.
The Committee on Customs Valuation took note of these reports and expressed appreciation for the continued valuable work of the Technical Committee.
(ii) Information available through the Technical Committee
The Technical Committee has established procedures for the dissemination of information on publications relating to national legislations where the texts in question are not covered by the procedures of the Committee on Customs Valuation, and for the circulation of declaration forms for customs value. The Technical Committee also publishes an Index of rulings and conclusions on valuation questions issued by Parties. Details of information available through the Technical Committee are contained in Annex II of this document.
9. SUBSTANTIAL DIFFICULTIES ENCOUNTERED BY PARTIES IN APPLYING THE AGREEMENT
During the period under review, no Party has reported any substantial difficulty in applying the Agreement.
10. CONSULTATION AND DISPUTE SETTLEMENT
The Secretariat is not aware of any Party that has requested consultations under Article 19 of the Agreement. The provisions of Article 20 have not been resorted to.
Paragraph 2 of Annex III of the Agreement states that each Party shall be invited to indicate at the beginning of every year to the Chairman of the Committee the name(s) of one or two governmental experts whom the Party would be willing to make available for panel work. Only Canada nominated two experts.
12. OTHER MATTERS RELATING TO IMPLEMENTATION
(i) Use of various valuation methods by Parties
It will be recalled that, at its meeting of 10-11 November 1983, the Committee agreed that a new data collection exercise should be postponed until additional countries were applying the Agreement, and decided to revert to this question at an appropriate future meeting. The question was not taken up in 1995.
13. ANNUAL REPORT TO THE CONTRACTING PARTIES
The Committee adopted its annual report to the CONTRACTING PARTIES in accordance with the requirements of Article 26 of the Agreement (L/7648).
14. GENERAL APPRECIATION OF EXPERIENCE WITH IMPLEMENTATION AND OPERATION OF THE AGREEMENT
As in previous years, Parties have indicated general satisfaction with the operation and implementation of the Agreement, which has continued to contribute towards the realization of its objectives and to create clearly improved conditions for the conduct of international trade.
Information on National Legislation
Below are listed the references to the documents containing national laws, regulations etc. and replies to the Checklist of Issues (VAL/2/Rev.1 and Rev.2) received from Signatories.
Signatory National legislation Replies to the
Checklist of Issues
Argentina VAL/1/Add.22 + Suppl.1-4 VAL/2/Rev.2/Add.4
Australia VAL/1/Add.14 + Suppl.1-4 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.12 + Suppl.1
Austria VAL/1/Add.10 + Suppl. 1 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.3 + Suppl.1
Botswana VAL/1/Add.16 Not received
Brazil VAL/1/Add.20 + Suppl.1 VAL/2/Rev.2/Add.3
Canada VAL/1/Add.17 + Suppl.1-3 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.14
Cyprus VAL/1/Add.26 VAL/2/Rev.2/Add.7
Czech Republic VAL/1/Add.18 + Suppl.1/ VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.15
Corr.1-2 + Suppl.1
European Economic VAL/1/Add.2 + Suppl.1-13 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.6
Community + Suppl.1
Finland VAL/1/Add.4 + Suppl.1-2 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.5
Hong Kong VAL/1/Add.9 Not applicable
Hungary VAL/1/Add.6 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.4
India VAL/1/Add.24 + Suppl.1 VAL/2/Rev.2/Add.6
Japan VAL/1/Add.7 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.8
Korea, Rep. of VAL/1/Add.19 + Suppl.1-4 VAL/2/Rev.2/Add.1
+ Suppl.2/Corr.1-2 + Suppl.1
Lesotho VAL/1/Add.21 + Suppl.1 VAL/2/Rev.2/Add.2
Mexico VAL/1/Add.25 + Suppl.1-3 VAL/2/Rev.2/Add.8
New Zealand VAL/1/Add.12 + Suppl.1 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.10
Norway VAL/1/Add.11 + Corr.1 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.7
Romania VAL/1/Add.8 + Suppl.1-2 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.9
Slovak Republic VAL/1/Add.18 + Suppl.1/ VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.15
Corr.1-2 + Suppl.1
South Africa VAL/1/Add.15 + Corr.1 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.13
Sweden VAL/1/Add.3 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.2
Switzerland VAL/1/Add.5 Not applicable
United States1 VAL/1/Add.1 + Suppl.1-5 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.1
Yugoslavia VAL/1/Add.13 VAL/2/Rev.1/Add.1
Zimbabwe VAL/1/Add.23 VAL/2/Rev.2/Add.5
1No longer a signatory.
Information relevant to the implementation and administration of the
Agreement disseminated through the Technical Committee
A. Dissemination of information on national legislation, etc.
The Technical Committee has established procedures for the dissemination of information on national publications relating to the adoption and implementation of the Agreement other than those texts circulated to the Committee on Customs Valuation under the procedures relating to the notification of national legislation. The following Parties have informed the Technical Committee, in the WCO documents specified, of publications that they would make available on request:
Party WCO document number
Canada 28.619 and 29.275
European Economic Community 27.182
New Zealand 29.939
United States 27.292 and 28.109
B. Declaration forms
Declaration forms for valuation purposes of the following Parties have been circulated in the WCO documents indicated:
Party WCO document number
Austria (provisional translation) 29.276
Canada 32.005, 32.459, 32.942,
Czech Republic 38.189
European Economic Community 26.916
Korea, Rep. of 34.294
New Zealand 29.938
C. Index of rulings
The Technical Committee has included in its compendium on the Agreement an index listing rulings and conclusions on valuation questions issued by countries applying the Agreement. Parties interested in a particular ruling can request the full text from the issuing administration.