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On 30 August 2016, the Official Journal published Decision No 1/2016 of the EU-Jordan Association Committee of 19 July 2016 amending the provisions of Protocol 3 to the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an Association ‘between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, of the other part, concerning the definition of the concept of originating products’ and the list of working or processing required to be carried out on non-originating materials in order for certain categories of products, manufactured in dedicated development zones and industrial areas, and connected with generating employment for Syrian refugees and Jordanians, to obtain originating status [2016/1436]. The Decision would temporarily relax applicable rules of origin to allow for certain goods produced in facilities located in one of the designated Development Zones and Industrial Areas in Jordan to be subject to less stringent rules of origin for the purpose of determining preferential treatment on import into the Union than would otherwise apply. This temporary relaxation of applicable rules of origin would be part of the Union’s support to Jordan in the context of the Syrian crisis and with the aim of mitigating the costs imposed by hosting a large number of Syrian refugees. The Union considers that the requested relaxation of the rules of origin would contribute to the overall objective that was set by Jordan in the framework of the International Conference on Supporting Syria and the Region, held in London on 4 February 2016, of creating approximately 200 000 job opportunities for Syrian refugees.
The relaxation of the rules of origin is subject to certain conditions with a view to ensuring that the benefit goes to exporters that contribute to the Jordanian effort of employing Syrian refugees. The Annex to the Decision applies to goods produced in production facilities located in dedicated development zones and industrial areas within Jordan and contributing to the generation of employment for Syrian refugees and for the Jordanian population. The proofs of origin must contain the following statement in English: ‘Derogation — Annex II(a) of Protocol 3 — name of the Development Zone or industrial area and authorisation number granted by the competent authorities of Jordan’.
Annex II to Protocol 3 of the Agreement is amended and complemented by Annex II(a) in order to specify the list of working or processing required to be carried out on non-originating materials in order for such products to obtain originating status. This complementary list of working or processing is based on the origin rules applied by the Union for imports from least-developed countries under the Generalised Scheme of Preferences/Everything But Arms initiative.
The total work force of each production facility located in the designated Areas is required to contain a proportion of Syrian refugees equivalent to at least 15 % during the first and second years after the entry into force of the Annex and to at least 25 % from the beginning of the third year after the entry into force of the Annex. The percentages will take into account the number of Syrian refugees that are employed in formal and decent jobs and on a Full-Time Equivalent basis, and that have received a work permit valid for a minimum period of 12 months under the applicable legislation of Jordan.
The application of the Annex to the Decision may be suspended temporarily in relation to a specific production facility if the conditions laid out in Article 1.1 of the Annex are not met by that facility. The Decision will be effective through 2026, with an EU-Jordan mid-term review.