Canada-Costa Rica Free Trade Agreement

Chapter V: Customs Procedures

Section I-Certification of Origin

Article V.1 Certificate of Origin

1. The Parties shall establish, by the date of entry into force of this Agreement, a Certificate of Origin for the purpose of certifying that a good being exported from the territory of a Party into the territory of the other Party qualifies as an originating good, and may thereafter revise the Certificate of Origin by agreement.

2. Each Party may require that a Certificate of Origin for a good imported into its territory be completed in the language required under its law.

3. Each Party shall:

4. Nothing in paragraph 3 shall be construed to require a producer to provide a Certificate of Origin to an exporter.

5. Each Party shall provide that a Certificate of Origin that has been completed and signed by an exporter or a producer in the territory of the other Party that is applicable to:

6. For any originating good that is imported into the territory of a Party on or after the date of entry into force of this Agreement, each Party shall accept a Certificate of Origin that has been completed and signed prior to that date by the exporter or producer of that good.

Article V.2 Obligations Regarding Importations

1. Except as otherwise provided in this Chapter, each Party shall require an importer in its territory that claims preferential tariff treatment for a good imported into its territory from the territory of the other Party to:

2. Each Party shall provide that, where an importer in its territory claims preferential tariff treatment for a good imported into its territory from the territory of the other Party:

3. Each Party shall provide that, where a good would have qualified as an originating good when it was imported into the territory of that Party but no claim for preferential tariff treatment was made at that time, the importer of the good may, no later than 4 years after the date on which the good was imported, apply for a refund of any excess duties paid as the result of the good not having been accorded preferential tariff treatment, on presentation of:

Article V.3 Exceptions

Each Party shall provide that a Certificate of Origin shall not be required for:

1. a commercial importation of a good whose value does not exceed US$1,000 or its equivalent amount in the Party's currency, or such higher amount as it may establish, except that it may require that the invoice accompanying the importation include a statement certifying that the good qualifies as an originating good;

2. a non-commercial importation of a good whose value does not exceed US$1,000 or its equivalent amount in the Party's currency, or such higher amount as it may establish; or

3. an importation of a good for which the Party into whose territory the good is imported has waived the requirement for a Certificate of Origin;

provided that the importation does not form part of a series of importations that may reasonably be considered to have been undertaken or arranged for the purpose of avoiding the certification requirements of Articles V.1 and V.2.

Article V.4 Obligations Regarding Exportations

1. Each Party shall provide that:

2. Each Party:

3. Neither Party may impose penalties on an exporter or a producer in its territory that voluntarily provides written notification pursuant to paragraph (1)(b) with respect to the making of an incorrect certification.

Section II - Administration and Enforcement

Article V.5 Records

Each Party shall provide that:

1. an exporter or a producer in its territory that completes and signs a Certificate of Origin shall maintain in its territory, for 5 years after the date on which the Certificate of Origin was signed or for such longer period as the Party may specify, all records relating to the origin of a good for which preferential tariff treatment was claimed in the territory of the other Party, including records associated with:

2. an importer claiming preferential tariff treatment for a good imported into the Party's territory shall maintain in that territory, for 5 years after the date of importation of the good or for such longer period as the Party may specify, such documentation, including a copy of the Certificate of Origin, as the Party may require relating to the importation of the good.

Article V.6 Origin Verifications

1. For purposes of determining whether a good imported into its territory from the territory of the other Party qualifies as an originating good, a Party may, through its customs administration, conduct a verification solely by means of:

2. An exporter or producer who receives a questionnaire pursuant to paragraph 1(a) shall be given not less than 30 days from the date of receipt to provide responses and return the form. During that period, the exporter or producer may submit a written request to the importing Party, asking for a single extension of this deadline for a period not to exceed an additional 30 days.

3. Where an exporter or producer fails to return a duly completed questionnaire within the above-mentioned period or extension, the importing Party may deny preferential tariff treatment to the good in question.

4. Prior to conducting a verification visit pursuant to Paragraph (1)(b), a Party shall, through its customs administration:

5. The notification referred to in paragraph 4 shall include:

6. Where an exporter or producer has not given its written consent to a proposed verification visit within 30 days of notification pursuant to paragraph 4, the notifying Party may deny preferential tariff treatment to the good that would have been the subject of the visit.

7. Each Party shall provide that, where its customs administration receives notification pursuant to paragraph 4, the customs administration may, within 15 days of receipt of the notification, postpone the proposed verification visit for a period not exceeding 60 days from the date of such receipt, or for such longer period as the Parties may agree.

8. Each Party shall provide that, when the exporter or producer receives notification pursuant to paragraph 4, the exporter or producer may, on a single occasion, within 15 days of receipt of the notification, request the postponement of the proposed verification visit for a period not exceeding 60 days from the date of such receipt, or for such longer period as agreed to by the notifying Party.

9. A Party shall not deny preferential tariff treatment to a good based solely on the postponement of a verification visit pursuant to paragraph 7.

10. Each Party shall permit an exporter or a producer whose good is the subject of a verification visit by the other Party to designate 2 observers to be present during the visit, provided that:

11. Each Party shall, through its customs administration, where conducting a verification of origin involving a regional value content, de minimis calculation or any other provision in Chapter IV (Rules of Origin) to which Generally Accepted Accounting Principles may be relevant, apply such principles as are applicable in the territory of the Party from which the good was exported.

12. The Party conducting a verification shall, through its customs administration and within 120 days after it has received all the necessary information, provide the exporter or producer whose good is the subject of the verification with a written determination of whether the good qualifies as an originating good, including findings of fact and the legal basis for the determination. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the customs administration may extend such period for up to 90 days, after notifying the producer or exporter of the good.

13. Where verifications by a Party indicate a pattern of conduct by an exporter or a producer of false or unsupported representations that a good imported into its territory qualifies as an originating good, the Party may withhold preferential tariff treatment to identical goods exported or produced by such person until that person establishes compliance with Chapter IV (Rules of Origin).

14. Each Party shall provide that where it determines that a certain good imported into its territory does not qualify as an originating good based on a tariff classification or a value applied by the Party to one or more materials used in the production of the good, which differs from the tariff classification or value applied to the materials by the other Party, the Party's determination shall not become effective until it notifies in writing both the importer of the good and the person that completed and signed the Certificate of Origin for the good of its determination.

15. A Party shall not apply a determination made under paragraph 14 to an importation made before the effective date of the determination where:

16. If a Party denies preferential tariff treatment to a good pursuant to a determination made under paragraph 14, it shall postpone the effective date of the denial for a period not exceeding 90 days where the importer of the good, or the person who completed and signed the Certificate of Origin for the good, demonstrates that it has relied in good faith to its detriment on the tariff classification or value applied to such materials by the customs administration of the other Party.

17. The Parties may also agree to develop other verification procedures under this Article.

Article V.7 Confidentiality

1. Each Party shall maintain, in accordance with its law, the confidentiality of the business information collected pursuant to this Chapter and shall protect that information from disclosure that could prejudice the competitive position of the person providing the information.

2. The confidential business information collected pursuant to this Chapter may only be disclosed to those authorities responsible for the administration and enforcement of determinations of origin, and of customs and revenue matters.

Article V.8 Penalties

1. Each Party shall maintain measures imposing criminal, civil or administrative penalties for violations of its laws and regulations relating to this Chapter.

2. Nothing in Article V.2.2, V.4.3 or V.6.9 shall be construed to prevent a Party from applying such measures as may be warranted by the circumstances in accordance with its legislation.

Section III - Advance Rulings

Article V.9 Advance Rulings

1. Each Party shall, through its customs administration, provide for the expeditious issuance of written advance rulings, prior to the importation of a good into its territory, to an importer in its territory or an exporter or a producer in the territory of the other Party, on the basis of the facts and circumstances presented by such importer, exporter or producer of the good, concerning:

2. Each Party shall adopt or maintain procedures for the issuance of advance rulings, including a detailed description of the information reasonably required to process an application for a ruling.

3. Each Party shall provide that its customs administration:

4. Subject to paragraph 6, each Party shall apply an advance ruling to importations into its territory of the good for which the ruling was requested, beginning on the date of its issuance or such later date as may be specified in the ruling.

5. Each Party shall provide to any person requesting an advance ruling the same treatment, including the same interpretation and application of provisions of Chapter IV (Rules of Origin) regarding a determination of origin, as it provided to any other person to whom it issued an advance ruling, provided that the facts and circumstances are identical in all material respects.

6. The issuing Party may modify or revoke an advance ruling:

7. Each Party shall provide that any modification or revocation of an advance ruling shall be effective on the date on which the modification or revocation is issued, or on such later date as may be specified therein, and shall not be applied to importations of a good that have occurred prior to that date, unless the person to whom the advance ruling was issued has not acted in accordance with its terms and conditions.

8. Notwithstanding paragraph 7, the issuing Party shall postpone the effective date of such modification or revocation for a period not exceeding 90 days where the person to whom the advance ruling was issued demonstrates that it has relied in good faith to its detriment on that ruling.

9. Each Party shall provide that where its customs administration examines the regional value content of a good for which it has issued an advance ruling pursuant to subparagraph 1(b), (c), (d) and (e), it shall evaluate whether:

10. Each Party shall provide that where its customs administration determines that any requirement in paragraph 9 has not been satisfied, it may modify or revoke the advance ruling as the circumstances may warrant.

11. Each Party shall provide that, where the person to whom an advance ruling was issued demonstrates that it used reasonable care and acted in good faith in presenting the facts and circumstances on which the ruling was based, and where the customs administration of a Party determines that the ruling was based on incorrect information, the person to whom the ruling was issued shall not be subject to penalties.

12. Each Party shall provide that where it issues an advance ruling to a person that has misrepresented or omitted material facts or circumstances on which the ruling is based, or has failed to act in accordance with the terms and conditions of the ruling, the Party may apply such measures as may be warranted by the circumstances in accordance with its laws.

13. The Parties shall provide that an advance ruling will remain in effect and will be honoured if there is no change in the material facts or circumstances on which it is based.

14. Each Party may provide that, where application for an advance ruling is made to its customs administration that involves an issue that is the subject of:

Section IV - Review and Appeal of Advance Rulings and Origin Determinations

Article V.10 Review and Appeal

1. Each Party shall grant substantially the same rights of review and appeal of determinations of origin and advance rulings issued by its customs administration as it provides to importers in its territory, to any person:

2. Further to Articles XII.4 (Administrative Proceedings) and XII.5 (Review and Appeal), each Party shall provide that the rights of review and appeal referred to in Paragraph 1 shall include access to:

Section V - Uniform Regulations

Article V.11 Uniform Regulations

1. The Parties shall establish, and implement, through their respective laws, regulations or administrative policies, by the date of entry into force of this Agreement, and at any time thereafter, upon agreement of the Parties, Uniform Regulations regarding the interpretation, application and administration of this Chapter and other matters as may be agreed by the Parties.

2. Each Party shall implement any modification of or addition to the Uniform Regulations no later than 180 days after the Parties agree on such modification or addition, or such other period as the Parties may agree.

Section VI - Cooperation

Article V.12 Uniform Regulations

1. Each Party shall notify the other Party of the following determinations, measures and rulings, including, to the greatest extent practicable, those that are prospective in application:

2. The Parties shall cooperate:

3. For purposes of this Article, the Parties shall enter into a Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement between their customs administrations.

Article V.13 The Customs Sub-Committee

1. The Parties hereby establish a Customs Sub-Committee, comprising representatives of each Party's customs administration. The Sub-Committee shall meet as requiredand at any other time on the request of either Party and shall:

2. Nothing in this Chapter shall be construed to prevent a Party from issuing a determination of origin or an advance ruling relating to any matter under consideration by the Customs Sub-Committee or from taking such other action as it considers necessary, pending a resolution of the matter under this Agreement.

Article V.14 Definitions

For purposes of this Chapter:

commercial importation means the importation of a good into the territory of a Party for the purpose of sale, or any commercial, industrial or other like use;

customs administration means the competent authority that is responsible under the law of a Party for the administration of customs laws and regulations;

determination of origin means a determination as to whether a good qualifies as an originating good in accordance with Chapter IV (Rules of Origin);

exporter in the territory of a Party means an exporter located in the territory of a Party and an exporter required under this Chapter to maintain records in the territory of that Party regarding exportations of a good;

identical goods means goods that are the same in all respects, including physical characteristics, quality and reputation, irrespective of minor differences in appearance that are not relevant to a determination of origin of those goods under Chapter IV (Rules of Origin);

importer in the territory of a Party means an importer located in the territory of a Party and an importer required under this Chapter to maintain records in the territory of that Party regarding importations of a good;

indirect material means "indirect material" as defined in Article IV.15 (Definitions);

material means "material" as defined in Article IV.15 (Definitions);

net cost of a good means "net cost of a good" as defined in Article IV.15 (Definitions);

preferential tariff treatment means the duty rate applicable to an originating good;

producer means "producer" as defined in Article IV.15 (Definitions);

production means "production" as defined in Article IV.15 (Definitions);

transaction value means "transaction value" as defined in Article IV.15 (Definitions);

Uniform Regulations means "Uniform Regulations" established under Article V.11 (Uniform Regulations);

used means "used" as defined in Article IV.15 (Definitions); and

value means value of a good or material in accordance with the Customs Valuation Agreement.

Date Modified: