Implementing certain export restrictions - Luxury Goods



Document­datum 07-02-2008
Publicatie­datum 12-08-2009
Kenmerk 6205/08
Van Presidency
Aan Delegations
Externe link originele PDF
Originele document in PDF



COUNCIL OF Brussels, 7 February 2008 THE EUROPEAN UNION


PESC 174 RELEX 85 FIN 46


From : Presidency

To : Delegations

Subject : Implementing certain export restrictions – Luxury Goods

  • 1. 
    Within the framework of the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), the EU applies restrictive measures in pursuit of the specific CFSP objectives set out in the Treaty on European Union. Such restrictive measures consist inter alia of export restrictions.
  • 2. 
    One of export restrictions currently in force in the field of restrictive measures is the prohibition to export luxury goods, listed in Annex III of the Regulation (EC) No 329/2007 i of 27 March 2007 concerning restrictive measures against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (hereinafter referred to as "the Regulation"), to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.
  • 3. 
    Delegations already had a first exchange of views on the implementation of this restriction in Relex/Sanctions (see document 10858/07). In addition, the Commission organized in September 2007 through DG TAXUD (B4) a seminar on the TARIC (Seminar on Improving TARIC Data, held in Larnaca (CY), 27-28 September 2007). One of the seminar's conclusions was that issues such as this one should be discussed at the EU level.
  • 4. 
    To follow up on those discussions, the Presidency would propose to explore this issue further with a view to finding an appropriate way forward.
  • 5. 
    The Regulation provides in Article 4 that "it shall be prohibited to sell, supply, transfer or export, directly or indirectly, luxury goods, as listed in Annex III, to North Korea." Annex III lists 22 luxury goods to which the above restriction applies. Since they are not numerous it is worth mentioning them at this point:
  • 1. 
    Pure-bred horses 2. Caviar and caviar substitutes
  • 3. 
    Truffles and preparations thereof 4. High quality wines (including sparkling wines), spirits and spirituous beverages
  • 5. 
    High quality cigars and cigarillos 6. Luxury perfumes, toilet waters and cosmetics, including beauty and make-up products
  • 7. 
    High quality leather, saddlery and travel 8. High quality garments, clothing accessories and goods, handbags and similar articles shoes (regardless of their material)
  • 9. 
    Hand-knotted carpets, handwoven rugs 10. Pearls, precious and semi-precious stones, and tapestries articles of pearls, jewellery, gold- or silversmith


  • 11. 
    Coins and banknotes, not being legal 12. Cutlery of precious metal or plated or clad with tender precious metal
  • 13. 
    High quality tableware of porcelain, 14. High quality lead crystal glassware china, stone- or earthenware or fine pottery
  • 15. 
    High end electronic items for domestic 16. High end electrical/electronic or optical use apparatus for recording and reproducing sound and


  • 17. 
    Luxury vehicles for the transport of 18. Luxury clocks and watches and their parts persons on earth, air or sea, as well as their accessories and spare parts
  • 19. 
    High quality musical instruments 20. Works of art, collectors' pieces and antiques
  • 21. 
    Articles and equipment for skiing, golf, 22. Articles and equipment for billiard, automatic diving and water sports bowling, casino games and games operated by coins

    or banknotes 6. The Council adopted Regulation (EEC) No 2658/87 i of 23 July 1987 on the tariff and statistical

nomenclature and on the Common Customs Tariff (OJ L 256, 7.9.1987, p. 1, as amended, hereinafter referred to as "the Nomtar regulation"), in which it establishes the Combined Nomenclature (CN) on the one hand, and on the other hand an Integrated Tariff of the European Communities (hereinafter referred to as "TARIC"). TARIC has been introduced so as to enable the Member States to have in one place all of the relevant EC legal acts on export or import of

goods and to thereby ensure unified implementation.

  • 7. 
    The Nomtar regulation provides in Article 6 that "the TARIC shall be established, updated, managed and disseminated by the Commission, which shall, wherever possible, use computerized means. The Commission shall, in particular, take the necessary steps to:

    (a) integrate all measures contained in this Regulation or shown in Annex II thereto into the TARIC,

    (b) attribute TARIC codes and TARIC additional codes, (c) update the TARIC immediately, (d) disseminate in electronic format changes to the TARIC immediately."

  • 8. 
    The Nomtar regulation further provides in Article 5 that "the TARIC shall be used by the Commission and the Member States for the application of Community measures concerning importation into and exportation from the Community." In order for the relevant national customs authorities to establish which Community measures apply to which goods at import or export to another country, they refer to the relevant tariff code from the Nomtar regulation, as shown by the following graphic:
  • 9. 
    As mentioned above, Annex III of the Regulation contains descriptions of goods to which the export prohibition applies, but without referring to the relevant tariff codes. As a result, these goods have not been integrated by the Commission (B4 DG TAXUD) into the TARIC. This increases significantly the possibility that the regulation is not applied in a uniform manner in the Member States. Without reference to the relevant TARIC codes and the fact that descriptions of goods are very broad, the scope of the export ban can be interpreted differently. In addition, since the measures are not included in a central computerized system it is much more difficult for the competent authorities to be informed of them, which is one of the reasons for which TARIC was created. The said situation could even lead to the non-implementation of the Regulation, in particular where the exercise of such a broad discretion given to the competent authorities could give rise to court proceedings seeking to challenge the Regulation for lack of providing proper legal certainty.
  • 10. 
    On the basis of the above considerations, the Presidency proposes to partners the following way forward with regard to the issue presented above:

(a) Amend Annex III of the Regulation

10.1. This means changing Annex III in such a manner that the descriptions of goods would correspond to those in the CN and adding appropriate tariff codes to the goods listed. It should be mentioned by way of example that the following goods listed in Annex III are described so that they can relatively easily be attributed a tariff code, since they match descriptions from the CN:

0101 10 − Pure-bred breeding animals:

0101 10 10 − − Horses 1604 30 − Caviar and caviar substitutes 0709 59 50 − − − Truffles (without preparations) Chapter 71 Natural or cultured pearls, precious or semi-precious stones, precious metals, metals clad with precious metal, and articles thereof; imitation jewellery; coin

Chapter 97 Works of art, collectors’ pieces and antiques

10.2. According to Article 13(c) of the Regulation, the Commission can amend Annex III in order to refine or adapt the list of goods included therein, according to any definition or guidelines that may be promulgated by the Sanctions Committee and taking into account the lists produced by other jurisdictions, or to add the reference numbers taken from the Combined Nomenclature as set out in Annex I to Regulation (EEC) No 2658/87 i, if necessary or appropriate.

(b) Provide general guidance

10.3. Additionally to (a) and taking into account that export/import restrictions are frequently part of the restrictive measures adopted, general guidance could also be provided by amending Guidelines on Implementation and Evaluation of Restrictive Measures (Sanctions) in the Framework of the EU Common Foreign and Security Policy (document 15114/05, hereinafter referred to as "the Guidelines") which provide guidance on common issues and present standard wording and common definitions that may be used in legal instruments implementing restrictive measures.

10.4. Guidance relating to exports of goods is provided in Section III/C of the Guidelines. Paragraph 64 provides inter alia that "future lists defining the scope of specific export or import control regimes may constitute a useful reference for specific export or import bans, if it is considered necessary to ban all trade of the specific, controlled category in relation to a particular country, in order to achieve the objectives of the CFSP." The said paragraph could be amended by inserting appropriate wording which would standardize the provision of tariff information when adopting regulations.

10.5. On the basis of the above considerations, the Guidelines could be amended by inserting a new third sentence in paragraph 64, which could read:

"The lists of goods which are subject to a specific export/import ban should be described in a

way which corresponds to the descriptions used in Council Regulation (EEC) No 2658/87 i."




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