Philippine exporters are advised to consider the – Green Deal – principle in the 27-EU member countries as this new trend will affect buying preference.
Commercial Counsellor Benedict Uy of the Philippine Embassy in Belgium & Permanent Mission to the European Union during a virtual webinar organized by the Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc. (PhilExport) said that the overarching principle in EU is the Green Deal.
“This is the common consciousness of people in EU from consumers, up to policymakers and government people, so everything revolves around Green Deal,” said Uy.
Because of this new consciousness, there are new regulations about the use of renewable energy about mobility, smart mobility, and climate action, to support the climate ambition for carbon neutral by 2030.
For example, he said, there is a new regulation that the Philippines is monitoring, about the carbon audit where companies in EU are being assessed as to their production method to make sure their product produces the minimum possible carbon emissions.
Implementation of these regulations are expected to extend to exporters, to suppliers from third countries like the Philippines and other countries where they source their product.
“Sooner or later you will also be imposing regulations to monitor and to control the emissions from all factories all over the world, and to what and whoever supplies them,” he added.
Already, EU has the so-called Farm to Fork strategy, which is a preference for organic food, meat alternatives, and artisanal products that come with a story. This is expected to create more regulations and controls to make sure that food is produced in a very sustainable manner.
Along with the green mindset in EU is the burgeoning e-commerce. Thus, Uy has urged exporters to set up their own websites for their products and for their companies.
EU has also big on Smart Mobility movement. Thus, Uy said there are opportunities in this space for Filipino bicycles and accessories products.
In Brussels, where Uy is currently posted, speed limit for private vehicles is only 50 to 30 kilometers per hour to promote the use of public transport, bicycles and scooters to lessen the use of vehicles.
Meantime, Uy said that the EU-GSP Plus scheme will expire in 2023 and a program will take effect in 2024, which is expected to run for another 10 years. All existing beneficiary countries, including the Philippines, will join the new system, wherein EU could add more products, liberalize more rules of origin rules, or maybe add more criteria and requirements.
EU will also a new convention – Paris Climate Agreement – to the existing 28 UN Conventions. The EU GSP Plus provides us with zero tariff for more than 6,000 products from the Philippines going into the EU. The Philippines has exported 2 billion euros or one-fourth of the total exports in 2019 to the EU in 2019.