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EPIA Calls For Quick Conclusion To Talks On Free Trade For Green Goods

by Mike Godfrey, Tax-News.com, Washington

06 October 2014


The European Photovoltaic Industry Association (EPIA) has called for the rapid conclusion of multilateral talks to remove tariffs on cross-border trading in solar products.

The Association's call concerns the ongoing talks at the World Trade Organization (WTO) towards an agreement to liberalize trade in environmental goods and services. The EPIA said that efforts to reduce the cross-border tax burden on solar products will undoubtedly increase uptake and support environmental efforts.

In January this year, a group of WTO members – Australia, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Taiwan, the European Union, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, Singapore, and the US – pledged to establish freer trade for so-called "green goods." These countries account for 86 percent of global trade.

The 14 WTO members launched negotiations on the Environmental Goods Agreement (EGA) on July 8, 2014. The initiative builds on the commitment made by Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) countries to reduce import tariffs on environmental goods to five percent or less by 2015. The APEC list extends to 54 goods, but could expand as more products that promote energy efficiency are identified. The WTO list includes solar water heaters, wind turbines, and catalytic converters.

TAGS: environment | business | free trade agreement (FTA) | energy | tariffs | World Trade Organisation (WTO) | Australia | China | Norway | Singapore | Taiwan | Canada | Costa Rica | Hong Kong | New Zealand | Switzerland | trade | Japan | services | Europe | Asia-Pacific

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