PHL exporters urged to look into increasing specific trade concerns

By Kris M. Crismundo

MANILA, June 28 (PNA) — Philippine exporters were urged to look into increasing specific trade concerns (STCs) in the global market to continue and enhance trade ties with other countries.

In a report shared by the Philippine Exporters Confederation of the Philippines, Inc. (Philexport), Philippines envoy to the World Trade Organization (WTO) Esteban Conejos Jr. disclosed during the meeting of WTO Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee that there are now increasing STCs in the world market, particularly in the sectors of food, liquor, and tobacco.

For instance, the country’s important export partners such as the United States, European Union, and Canada have raised their standards in food safety and food labelling requirements, as well as labelling requirements and licensing regulations on alcohol and liquor products.

Likewise, Costa Rica brought up STC on standards in food safety and food labelling requirements while Argentina also had concern on labelling requirements and licensing regulations on alcohol and liquor products.

Conejos added that for Filipino tobacco exporters that would likely to continue or start exporting to markets of Cuba and Malawi, they must meet the packaging requirements of the said two countries after they raised STCs on tobacco products.

He also mentioned that other WTO members also brought up STCs in sectors of chemicals, tires, ICT, and safety of products for children and adolescents.

Thus, Philippine exporters must look into STCs of other countries and meet the requirements of the world market to further boost the country’s export performance.

“Although tariffs had significantly decreased, technical regulations and other non-tariff measures have grown in number, stifling market access for Philippine exports,” Conejos noted. (PNA)