Explanation of the Agreement on Import Authorization Procedures These audits allow members to draw multilateral attention to the authorisation measures and procedures they deem problematic, to obtain information on specific issues and to resolve problems and, possibly, to resolve problems before they become disputes. Automatic authorisation procedures should not be managed in such a way as to have a restrictive effect on imports; there should be no discrimination between those applying for automatic licences. Anyone who meets the legal requirements should have the same right to apply for and receive import certificates. The WTO Agreement on Import Certificate Procedures (Import Certificate Agreement) sets rules for all members regarding the use of import certificate systems to regulate their trade. Import certificate systems are administrative procedures that require the submission of an application or other documentation (which is not usually required for customs purposes) to an administrative authority designated as a precondition for importation. In addition to the import licence itself, the agreement also includes procedures related to a number of practices that meet this definition, including import permits, import or import authorizations, and import licences. Import authorisation requirements, such as import licences, such as certification of standards and sanitary and technical rules, are also subject to the rules of the import licensing agreement. Any U.S. company exporting goods to a WTO member country that requires import licenses for these products can benefit from this agreement.
WTO decisions on the import licensing agreement are available in the WTO Law and Practice Index Analytical Guide If your company is interested in exporting to a country that requires import certificates, ask the importer if a licence is required for your product and, if so, if the importer has prepared and provided all the necessary documents to obtain the licence. Many countries often change their licensing requirements and, as a result, there is not a single publication that either lists all countries that need import licences or defines all products for which import licences are required. Members must apply import authorization procedures in a neutral manner and manage them fairly and fairly (Article 1.3). Applications should not be rejected on the basis of minor documentary errors and should not be severely punished for omissions or errors in documents or procedures clearly carried out without premeditation or gross negligence (Article 1.7). Licensed imports cannot be refused for reasons consistent with normal business practices due to slight variations in the value, volume or weight of the amount shown in the certificate (Article 1.8). The agreement includes both “automatic” licensing systems for import monitoring only and “non-automatic” licensing systems under which certain conditions must be met before a licence is granted. Governments often use non-automatic licences to manage import restrictions such as quotas and tariff quotas (TRQs) or to manage security or other requirements (. B for example, for dangerous products, armaments, antiques, etc.). The Committee wishes to promote compliance with the rules agreed in the agreement through a system of periodic audits by the Committee on Notifications submitted by WTO members.