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ECCO�s Symposium Focuses On Offset, Customs & Trade

ECCO is an European association for companies, individuals, and institutions involved in offset and countertrade. The association organizes symposiums where members and guests can unravel matters related to international law, customs, trade, and government procurement. Offset research and training are also aims of the European Club for Countertrade and Offset.

The most recent ECCO symposium was hosted in Paris (France) on the 6th and 7th of September. The first day�s program focused on offset in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), with the theme of the second day investigating �Legal and Economic Impacts of Direct Offset.� Speakers and experts hailed from various disciplines, with the 100 delegates representing 15 countries.

An analysis of the demographics and national laws of the UAE shed some light on the major changes that were witnessed in the country over the past years. Information on industries and the goal of the government�s long-term plan to diversify the economy were topics that led to interactive debate.

An overview of the European Union�s (EU) bilateral negotiations showed that it has successfully concluded a number of important trade agreements with trading partners, and is in the process of negotiating agreements with many more. In addition to the World Trade Organization�s (WTO) multilateral negotiations, the EU concludes bilateral agreements and devises specific trading policies with third-world countries and regional areas.

The trade section of the European Commission (EC) shared information on preferential and non-preferential rules of origin, sharing base principles and recent developments in this field. A representative of the French Custom General Directorate further elaborated on the subject.

The World Customs Organization presented its aims to harmonize the rules of origin, explaining the economic impacts of the rules on international trade and investment. A speaker from the WTO offered an interesting perspective on �Made In The World� and explained why the world is moving from trade in goods to trade in tasks.

The theme of the following ECCO symposium is �Offset Within The EU: Enforcement Of The 2009/81/EC Directive.� This event will be hosted on December 14 and 15 (2011) in Brussels. Speakers will discuss their experiences in applying or implementing the new Directive, while countries outside the EU will demonstrate how offset benefits their industries. �Best Practices In Offset� is also on the agenda.

To become a member of ECCO or for more information visit

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