“TL is working on establishing its Certificate of Origin,” says Minister Amaral

“TL is working on establishing its Certificate of Origin,” says Minister Amaral

Coordinating Minister of Economic Affairs (CMoEA), Joaquim Amaral (Image Tatoli/Francisco Sony)

DILI, 14 september 2022 (TATOLI) – Timor-Leste is currently working on the establishment of its certificate of origin to boost the country’s participation in international trade transactions.

“We have handed over the decree-law on the creation of the certificate of origin to the Presidency of the Council of Ministers. Thus, in the near future, we will have a discussion on the law. This export document is important for Timor-Leste as we will soon join ASEAN and WTO,” the Coordinating Minister of Economic Affairs, Joaquim Amaral told TATOLI at the Palace of Government, in Dili, today.

Amaral said this export document is mandatory in all countries: “The certificate of origin is mandatory in Australia, New Zealand, US and the member States of WTO, ASEAN, and EU.”

He said that the origin of goods is one of the crucial elements for international trade: “Therefore, all goods exported to the territories of these countries need a certificate of origin.”.

A certificate of origin is an essential international trade document that verifies a product’s country of origin.

“The document states where the product was produced, manufactured, or processed. Such as Timor-Leste’s coffee, and other products,” said Amaral.

He said the government’s preparation for the creation of the trade document is expected to be completed in the near future.

“Once we have the rules and regulations in place, we will proceed with the establishment of a public institution that will be responsible for the issuance of the document,” Amarak said.

He reiterated that this trade document will facilitate Timor-Leste as a member of both ASEAN and WTO: “Therefore, the certificate of origin is part of the criteria we have to meet to join both organizations.”

Amaral emphasized that before issuing the document, the country also needs a quality laboratory to carry out the testing on goods: “So, before exporting any goods overseas, we need to know the content of the product through laboratory testing. Laboratory testing is important for the product’s label. Before exporting our goods overseas, both raw and processed products require labels .”

Becoming the 11th member of ASEAN means Timor-Leste will take part in the ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA).

As a new member of AFTA, Timor-Leste must have its certificate of origin to engage in regional trade transactions among other ASEAN countries.

Despite having no certificate of origin, in 2020, the country exported around US$11 million in Coffee, making it the 70th largest exporter of Coffee in the world. In the same year, Coffee was the third most exported product in Timor-Leste after Crude Petroleum ($63.2 million), and Petroleum Gas ($15.5 million).



Journalist: Filomeno Martins

Editor: Nelia Borges


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