On January 22 of 2021, it was published on the Federal Official Gazette (“DOF” in its Spanish Acronym) the Agreement for the creation of the permanent National Trade Facilitation Committee (herein the “Agreement). The purpose of the National Trade Facilitation Committee (herein the “Committee”) is to facilitate the coordination between governmental offices, agencies of the Federal Public Administration and independent constitutional agencies, within the scope of their different competences, participate in the regulation of programs related to foreign trade.
The aforementioned addresses both, the National Development Plan 2019-2024 as well as the Protocol Amendment of the Marrakech Agreement that establishes the World Trade Organization (herein the “Protocol”), which indicates in the second paragraph of Article twenty-three in the institutional arrangements, that each member will maintain or establish a National Trade Facilitation Committee. The purpose is to improve trade facilitation in order to abolish the inefficient procedures and requirements, resulting in a reduction of trade costs and simplifying administrative procedures.
The Agreement seeks to materialize the content of the Protocol, in order to accelerate the implementation of the trade facilitation provisions, based on national and international applicable regulations.
The Committee shall be composed of the following entities representatives: Secretariat of Economy, Secretariat of Foreign Affairs, Secretariat of National Defense, Secretariat of Finance and Public Credit, Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources, Secretariat of Energy, Secretariat of Agriculture and Rural Development, Secretariat of Communications and Transportation and Secretariat of Health. All of the above, with the right to speak and vote in the sessions in which they are present.
Furthermore, it is expected to have as permanent guests the representatives of the Mexico’s Central Bank, the Tax Administration Service, the National Commission for Regulatory Improvement, and the Federal Antitrust Commission. In the same way, it is emphasized that when estimated, the Committee may include as guests the representatives of the private sector, civil society organizations, academic institutions and all subject matter experts. All of the above, with the right to speak in the sessions in which they are present.
Among the Committee’s important functions, the following may be highlighted:
- Serve as a coordinating body for the competent entities of the Federal Public Administration participating in the implementation and application of the Agreement.
- Collaborate with the Secretariat of Economy and the Secretariat of Foreign Affairs in the design of politics, programs and actions oriented to simplify and automatize the processes in matter of foreign trade.
- Propose suggestions related to implementation and application matters of the Agreement.
- Analyze, and when needed, submit recommendations in order to improve the efficiency of foreign trade processes, with the aim of reducing costs and eliminate trade barriers.
The creation of the Committee will encourage the strengthening of foreign trade policies, benefiting our country.