Trade Barriers Regulation of the EU
What is Trade Barriers Regulation?
Part of the EU’s trade rules enforcement arsenal, the Trade Barriers Regulation is a legal instrument that gives EU companies, industries, associations and Member States the right to lodge a complaint with the Commission about trade barriers in third countries.
It is the Regulation (EU) 2015/1843 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 October 2015 laying down Union procedures in the field of the common commercial policy in order to ensure the exercise of the Union’s rights under international trade rules, in particular those established under the auspices of the World Trade Organization.
How does it work?
If the complaint fulfils the criteria for admission, the Commission then examines the case to determine whether there is evidence of violations of international trade rules resulting in adverse trade effects or injury, and whether it is in the EU’s interest to act.
If the procedure concludes that action is necessary to ensure the respect of international trade rules and to remove the injury caused, appropriate measures can be taken, which may include the initiation of dispute settlement proceedings.
What is a practical example?
Information by the European Commission. Third countries are an important market for EU ceramic tiles. Saudi Arabia is a notable export destination, representing 2.8% of EU tile exports and sales of € 100 million in 2019. A 2021 Commission examination found that Saudi Arabia’s technical regulations were hindering 75% to 80% of EU exports in ceramic tiles, affecting SMEs in particular.
As of 31 March 2022, EU exporters of ceramic tiles will no longer need to undergo redundant testing or product audits when they export to Saudi Arabia, meaning exporting will become cheaper, faster and more predictable. The EU secured a commitment from Saudi Arabia on the latter’s removal of a number of obstacles currently affecting the import of ceramic tiles.
- Market: EU - European Union