DCTS to replace UK GSP; SL to benefit from duty-free exports to UK on more than 80-pct of products

  • Over 99% of goods exported from Sri Lanka eligible for duty-free access to the UK
  • £69m of tariffs saved on exports to the UK under the new Developing Countries Trading Scheme

The UK is reshaping trade with 65 developing countries, including Sri Lanka, through a new trading framework: the Developing Countries Trading Scheme (DCTS). The DCTS will be one of the most generous sets of trading preferences of any country in the world, helping to grow trade, boost jobs and drive economic growth. The new scheme will replace the UK Generalised Scheme of Preferences and will come into force in early 2023.

The British High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Sarah Hulton said:

I am delighted that under the DCTS’s Enhanced Preferences, Sri Lanka will benefit from duty free exports to the UK on more than 80% of products. The DCTS will remove tariffs on over 150 additional products. It will also simplify some seasonal tariffs, meaning additional and simpler access for Sri Lanka’s exports to the UK

Overall, the total trade between the UK and Sri Lanka each year is around £1.4bn. Sri Lankan goods which benefit most from the DCTS include exports to the UK of baby clothes, t-shirts and vests, which receive a 12 percentage point reduction in import duty.

The DCTS replaces the UK Generalised Scheme of Preferences and simplifies rules of origin for LDCs, reduces tariffs, revises how goods graduate and simplifies requirements to access enhanced tariffs. The DCTS retains existing powers to suspend a country on the grounds of human rights and labour rights violations and broadens these powers to include violations in relation to anti-corruption, climate change and environment conventions.
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