The European Union (EU) has approved duty-free entry for a list of 12 Lebanese agricultural products. As of March 1, produce from the Republic will enter European markets tariff-free or at a reduced rate of duty, reported the European Commission (EC).
The move was negotiated last June when the two parties signed the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership Agreement. Lebanon committed to a free trade relationship with the EU by 2010 and was given a five-year grace period to gradually decrease its customs fees on imports of European agricultural products. EU products will begin to receive the same treatment as Lebanese products exported to the continent by 2014.
EC’s Commissioner for External Relations, Chris Patten traveled to Lebanon on Thursday to discuss the state’s relationship with the EU through its newly ratified Association Agreement as well as developments in the Middle East. Patten was scheduled to meet with Lebanese Prime Minister Rafic Hariri, President Emile Lahoud and Minister for Foreign Affairs Mahmoud Hammoud. — (menareport.com)
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