Overview of IJCEPA Certificate
India-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IJCEPA) is an agreement signed by the Government of India and the Government of Japan to increase investment opportunities and strengthen protection for investments and investment activities between the countries. This Agreement is signed for the purpose of preferential treatment between its parties, India and Japan. The general conditions for the preferential tariff treatment under this Agreement are that the goods exported to India or Japan must fall within the description of goods (including HS Code) eligible for concession in India or Japan and comply with requirements in Preference criteria that are set out under this Agreement and also comply with provisions of consignment criteria of the Agreement.
This Agreement applies to the area of India and Japan, which consists of the territory of each country, including their territorial sea, the airspace above territory and the area beyond its territorial sea, including sea-bed and subsoil and over which both these countries have sovereign rights or jurisdiction in accordance of their laws and regulations and also international law including the UN conventions on the Law of the Sea.
Objectives of IJCEPA
The objectives of IJCEPA are as follows:
- To liberalise and facilitate trade in the goods and services within India and Japan.
- To increase investment opportunities and strengthen protection for investments and investment activities in India and Japan.
- To ensure intellectual property protection and promote co-operation in the field thereof.
- To promote co-operation for effective enforcement of competition laws in each Party (India and Japan)
- To improve the business environment in each Party.
- To establish a framework to enhance closer co-operation in the field agreed in this comprehensive economic preferential Agreement.
- To create effective procedures for implementing and applying IJCEPA and resolving disputes.
While the Export Inspection Council, commonly known as EIC, is mandated to grant Certificate of Origin for goods under various trade agreements of India, and in addition to that for marine products, the Marnie Authority Export Development Authority (MPEDA) and with respect to textiles and made-ups, the Textile Committee are authorised to issue Certificate of Origin (Preferential) under the India-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IJCEPA), also known as IJCEPA Certificate.
Benefits of IJCEPA Certificate
Following are the benefits of having an IJCEPA Certificate as per the provisions of the Comprehensive Economic Preferential Agreement between India and Japan:
Each Party, i.e., India and Japan, have to publish or make public its laws, regulations, administrative procedures and administrative rulings & judicial decisions of general application related to the matters covered under IJCEPA. Also, they have to make public the names and addresses of competent authorities responsible for such laws and regulations.
- Measures against corruption
Each Party, i.e., must as per their laws and regulations, take appropriate measures to prevent and combat corruption of their public officials regarding matters covered by IJCEPA.
- Environmental protection
India and Japan both acknowledge the importance of a sustainable environment and environmental protection. They recognise each Party's right to establish their environmental policies and priorities, ensuring their laws and regulations provide adequate environmental protection and strive to continue improving such laws and regulations.
Each Party of IJCEPA, according to their laws and regulations, maintain the confidentiality of information provided in confidence by the other Party in pursuance of this Agreement.
Other benefits of obtaining IJCEPA Certificate are as follows:
- Reduction in tariffs and trade barriers
- Promotion of fair competition
- Equitable benefits to both parties
- Effective mechanisms for joint administration
- Effective resolution of disputes
- Enhanced mutual benefits for trade
- Framework for regional co-operation
- Encouragement of cross-border transactions between both parties.
Eligibility for IJCEPA Certificate
The goods that are considered eligible under the Comprehensive Economic Preferential Agreement between India and Japan fall under the following two preferential criteria:
- Goods wholly obtained/produced entirely in the Party, i.e., either India or Japan and such goods include the followings:
- Live animals born and raised in India or Japan
- Animals are obtained by hunting, trapping, fishing, gathering or capturing in India or Japan.
- Goods obtained from live animals in India or Japan
- Plants and plant products are harvested, picked or gathered in India or Japan, where plants include fruits, flowers, vegetables, trees, seaweed, fungi and live plants.
- Minerals and other naturally occurring substances are extracted or taken in India or Japan.
- Goods of sea-fishing and other goods were taken by vessels from the Party outside the territorial seas of both parties.
- Goods produced on board factory ships of Party outside territorial seas of both parties from goods referred to in previous point (6)
- Goods were taken from the sea-bed or subsoil beneath the sea-bed outside the territorial sea of both parties. However, the parties have the right to exploit such a sea bed or subsoil according to provisions of the UN convention on the law of the sea.
- Articles collected in India or Japan which can no longer perform their original purpose in either of the Party nor are capable of being restored/repaired and which are fit for disposal or for recovery of parts or raw materials.
- Scrap and waste are derived from manufacturing or processing operations or from consumption in India or Japan and fit only for disposal or recovery of raw materials.
- Parts or raw materials recovered in India or Japan from articles which are no longer in condition to perform their original purpose nor are capable of being restored or repaired
- Goods obtained or produced in India or Japan exclusively from goods that are referred to above.
- Goods not wholly obtained or produced in India or Japan, provided such goods satisfy the following requirements:
- Goods have a qualifying value content of not less than 35%
- All non-originating materials used in the production of goods have undergone in either of the Party a change in tariff classification at the 6-digit level of the harmonised system.
Documents Required for IJCEPA Certificate
Followings are the documents and information required while applying for IJCEPA Certificate:
- Details of exporter including name, address and country
- Details of importer including name, address and country
- Details of the loading port, transit port and discharging port
- Name of vessels or flight number
- Date of shipment, i.e., bill of loading or airway bill date (in case of retroactive issuance)
- Item number, marks & numbers, number and kind of packages, tariff classification number based on HS 2007 and description of each good consigned.
- HS tariff classification number in six-digit level
- Preference criterion of goods
- Quantity of goods
- Invoice number and date for each good, also third country invoicing (in case invoice is generated by a person different from exporter and such person is located in a non-party).
- DSC or Digital Signature Certificate
- IEC or Import-Export Code
- Manufacturer exporter declaration on company's letterhead
- Product Description
- Purchase order from the importer party
Procedure for IJCEPA Certificate
A complete procedure for obtaining the IJCEPA Certificate is as follows:
The applicant files an application to the appropriate authority with Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) and recently updated Import-Export Code (IEC).
The applicant submits all relevant information and required documents along with the application.
The applicant makes payment of the requisite fees after submission of the application form.
- Issuance of License:
When all the above-mentioned steps are completed, the appropriate Certificate issuing authority issues the IJCEPA Certificate in the name of the applicant.
Frequently Asked Questions
IJCEPA Certificate is valid for 12 months from the date of issue.
India has signed the Comprehensive Economic Preferential Agreement with other countries also like Singapore and South Korea, apart from Japan.
The categories of Certificate of Origin include the following:
A preferential Certificate of Origin is required to export to countries that are involved in trade agreements.
Importers have to submit an IJCEPA Certificate issued by any competent authority of the exporting Party to claim preferential tariff treatment. And also, in order to make a claim for preferential tariff treatment under GSP, the importers are required to submit a valid IJCEPA Certificate issued by the competent authority of the beneficiary party/country.
Importers are natural or judicial persons who import goods to the importing Party.
The Fungible Originating materials of a party means originating goods or materials of a party that are interchangeable for commercial purposes & whose properties are essentially identical.