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U.S.-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement

Documenting Origin

Claim for Preferential Tariff Treatment

Only originating goods are eligible for preferential treatment under the U.S.-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement (“U.S.-Peru TPA” or “Agreement”). Although the Peruvian importer has the responsibility of making a claim for preferential treatment, it is important that the U.S. producer, U.S. exporter (if not the producer), and Peruvian importer work closely and share information to ensure that the originating goods receive the preferential tariff treatment to which they are entitled. See the Rules of Origin for information on how to determine whether your goods meet the rule of origin requirements under the Agreement.

Demonstrating Eligibility for Preferential Treatment

A Peruvian importer is responsible for making a claim for preferential tariff treatment on goods exported from the United States under the Agreement. A claim for preferential tariff treatment can be made through

  • a written or electronic certification issued by the importer, exporter or producer, or
  • based on the knowledge of the importer that the good is an originating good.

Peru has delayed its implementation of claims for preferential tariff treatment based on electronic certifications and importer knowledge for 3 years from the date of entry into force of the Agreement, so for this period of time a claim for preferential tariff treatment must be made through a written certification issued by the importer, exporter or producer. When a certification is used, it need not be made in a prescribed format, but it must include the following information:

  • the name of the certifying person, including, as necessary, contact or other identifying information;
  • tariff classification under the Harmonized System and a description of the good;
  • information demonstrating that the good is originating;
  • date of the certification; and
  • in the case of blanket period certification issued as set out in Article 4.15 of Chapter 4 of the Agreement, the period that the certification covers.

When requested by the Peruvian customs authorities, the importer must be prepared to provide a copy of the certification. Note that claiming preferential treatment under this and any other free trade agreement is voluntary and it is at the discretion of the U.S. producer or U.S. exporter whether to support such a claim.

Supporting Documentation

Exporter’s Requirements
An exporter or producer that issues a certification which serves as the basis of the importer’s claim for preferential tariff treatment, is required to maintain for five years from the date the certification was issued, all records demonstrating that the good qualified for preferential tariff treatment. Records to be maintained are those concerning:

  • the purchase of, cost of, value of, and payment for, the exported good;
  • the purchase of, cost of, value of, and payment for all materials, including indirect materials, used in the production of the exported good; and
  • the production of the good in the form in which it was exported.

Importer’s Requirements
The U.S.-Peru TPA places the burden of substantiating the validity of the claim for preferential tariff treatment on the importer. An importer making a claim for preferential treatment for a good must maintain, for a minimum of five years from the date the importation is made, all records necessary to demonstrate the good qualified for preferential treatment.

Filing a Correction

An exporter or producer that realizes that it has provided a certification that contains or is based on inaccurate information is obligated to promptly notify in writing every person to whom the exporter or producer provided the certification of any change to the certification that could affect the validity and accuracy of the certification. If an importer made a claim for preferential tariff treatment based on an inaccurate certification issued by the exporter or producer, the importer may be liable for any applicable unpaid customs duties.

An importer that makes an invalid claim for preferential tariff treatment cannot be penalized if the importer did not engage in negligence, gross negligence, or fraud, and if the importer promptly and voluntarily corrects the claim and pays any customs duties owed.

A Claim for Preferential Tariff Treatment May be Made Up to One Year After Importation

An importer may make a retroactive claim for preferential tariff treatment for a good that was originating when imported, but for which the importer did not make a claim for preferential tariff treatment at the time of importation. A retroactive claim must be made no later than one year after the date of importation. The importer can also apply for a refund of any excess duties paid.

To do so the importer must provide:

  • a written declaration stating the good was originating at the time of importation;
  • a written or electronic certification, if a certification forms the basis for the claim, or other information demonstrating the good is originating; and
  • any other documentation the importing country may require.

Blanket Certifications

Where an importer, exporter and producer make multiple shipments of identical goods within a 12 month period, the importer can use a blanket certification which covers all importations of those goods as the basis for its claims for preference for one year. In these cases, it is not necessary to create new written or electronic certifications for each individual shipment.