Free trade agreements, origin

Origin within the framework of free trade agreements (preferential origin)

Switzerland has concluded free trade agreements with a number of countries. The preferential treatment granted under these agreements applies only to goods which comply with the origin provisions, however.

We are responsible for the implementation of the preferential trade in Switzerland as part of the free trade agreements. Further information can be found at: Free trade agreements (preferential origin).

Origin within the framework of the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) for developing countries

The Generalized System of Preferences for developing countries traces back to a resolution of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). Through it, access to world trade is facilitated for developing countries, and tariff preferences are granted unilaterally by industrialised nations.

We are responsible for the implementation in Switzerland. Further information can be found at: Developing countries.

Non-preferential origin

Non-preferential origin is applicable when foreign trade measures (e.g. anti-dumping levies, redressive duties, trade embargos, etc.) are applied to the importation and exportation of goods. However, it is not connected with preferential tariffs (preferential origin). The certification offices are the chambers of commerce of Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

The Directorate General of Customs oversees the certification offices. Further information can be found at: Non-preferential origin.

Indications of provenance on products

Indications of provenance on products are indications of the geographical provenance of the goods. There are fundamental differences between the rules of origin governed by customs law and the rules governing the geographical indications of provenance in accordance with the Federal Law on the Protection of Trademarks and Indications of SourceĀ .

Geographical indications of provenance belong to Federal Law on the Protection of Trademarks and Indications of SourceĀ . This states that indications of provenance used must be accurate and contribute to genuine and fair competition.

Indications of provenance guarantee, for example, that only products which come from a defined geographic area and which meet the standards of quality and reputation associated with "Switzerland" may actually be labelled with the words "Switzerland", "Swiss" or similar references to Switzerland.

National implementation of regulations regarding indications of provenance is the responsibility of the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property: www.ige.ch.

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