What are rules of origin and when are they used?

Origin is the "economic nationality" of a product. That is where it was obtained or manufactured, rather than from where it was shipped. The country of origin of goods is a factor in determining the amount of duty payable, alongside the commodity code and value of the goods. Some countries have reduced duty rates as laid out in trade agreements – called preferential rules of origin.

In many trade deals a Rules of Origin certificate is required to qualify for favourable treatment. It is the exporter’s responsibility to obtain this. A certificate is often issued by a Chamber of Commerce for a price but, in some agreements, self-certification is permitted.

Read our comprehensive guide to rules of origin article with lots more information, important actions businesses need to take and links to further support.