The European Commission and the International Trade Centre (ITC) have launched the EuroMed Trade Helpdesk – a portal that provides businesses with essential information about markets, tariffs and import requirements. The Helpdesk aims to strengthen economic ties between the European Union and nine Mediterranean partners, as well as between Mediterranean countries themselves.
Funded by the EU and implemented by the ITC, the online portal will provide exporters with free information about potential markets, such as customs duties and product requirements. Its searchable database covers the EU as well as Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Tunisia and Turkey. The project aims to foster economic integration and trade in the region by helping companies save costs on information gathering.
“The EuroMed Helpdesk is good news for businesses and consumers around the Mediterranean,” said EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström. “And by making it easier to trade it’ll help the region’s economy and integration.”
The EuroMed Trade Helpdesk provides an online one-stop-shop for country and product-specific information on tariffs and duties, import and export procedures, and market requirements. In addition, a network of national focal points in each participating Mediterranean country will respond to enquiries on intra-regional trade issues and ensure information is kept up to date.
The EuroMed Helpdesk is available in English, French, Arabic, and Turkish. It will complement the EU Export Helpdesk – on which it is modelled – that provides free information on EU market requirements. It differs, however, by also giving company-specific information.
The EuroMed Trade Helpdesk is part of the EuroMed Trade and Investment Facilitation Mechanism (TIFM), an initiative funded by the EU and implemented by the ITC. The Mechanism aims at facilitating closer economic ties between the European Union and Mediterranean countries as well as improving integration in the Mediterranean region. The ITC is a joint agency of the World Trade Organisation and the United Nations, which assists small and medium-sized enterprises in developing and transition economies to become more competitive in global markets.