ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has the same level of trade access as earlier under the GSP+ preferential trade scheme for one year after the UK left the European Union, British High Commission Sarah Hulton has said.
A new preferential trade scheme is on the way and will go into effect in 2021, she added in remarks made to the Sri Lanka Apparel Exporters Association in Colombo.
“Sri Lanka will continue to benefit from the same level of access on its exports to the UK that it currently receives from GSP+ during our transition period this year,” Hulton said.
The UK government has said that least-developed countries framework would get preferences broadly similar to the ‘everything but arms’ access under, a general framework (GSP equivalent) for others and enhanced framework (GSP+).
The UK has also started a consultation on giving most favoured nation status to developing countries after Brexit.
Leaving the EU means the UK has to renegotiate previous treaties and agreements which were instituted under the Union.
“I would really encourage to you feed into this process as the UK seeks to balance its trade,” Hulton said.
The MFN tariff schedule will go into effect from January 2021.
In 2018, total trade in goods and services between Sri Lanka and the UK was 1.5 billion Sterling, up 7.6 percent from a year earlier.
The UK is the second largest export destination for Sri Lanka.
Out of all apparels imported by the old EU, 30 percent went into the UK, the High Commissioner pointed out. (Colombo/Feb14/2020-SB)