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Document 52020PC0053

Proposal for a COUNCIL DECISION on the position to be taken on behalf of the European Union in the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee established under the Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters as regards the adoption of the internal rules of procedure of the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee

COM/2020/53 final

Brussels, 14.2.2020

COM(2020) 53 final

2020/0025(NLE)

Proposal for a

COUNCIL DECISION

on the position to be taken on behalf of the European Union in the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee established under the Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters as regards the adoption of the internal rules of procedure of the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee


EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

1.Subject matter of the proposal

This proposal concerns the decision establishing the position to be taken on the Union's behalf in the European Union-New Zealand Joint Customs Cooperation Committee in connection with the envisaged decision to adopt its rules of procedure

2.Context of the proposal

2.1.The Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters

The Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters (‘the Agreement’) aims to benefit legitimate trade between the two parties by creating a more secure and trade-friendly environment as the respective customs authorities will exchange more information to ensure the proper application of customs legislation under the Agreement. The Agreement entered into force on 1 May 2018.

2.2.Joint Customs Cooperation Committee

The Joint Customs Cooperation Committee (‘JCCC’), established under Article 20.1 of the Agreement, is to see to the proper functioning and implementation of the Agreement. For that purpose the JCCC can take actions and adopt decisions on matters defined in Article 20 of the Agreement. Article 20.2(e) of the Agreement empowers the JCCC to adopt its rules of procedure.

2.3.The envisaged act of the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee

During its second meeting scheduled to take place in the first week of March 2020, and subject to the EU’s decision making process, the JCCC is to adopt a decision regarding its rules of procedure (‘the envisaged act’).

The purpose of the envisaged act is to set out the working arrangements of the JCCC in terms of its operation for the implementation of the Agreement in accordance with Article 20 of the Agreement. The substance of the Rules of Procedure of the Joint Committee in Annex to this decision is very similar to that adopted by the Joint Committees established under other customs cooperation and trade agreements. The adoption of this document is essential for the smooth functioning and implementation of the Agreement.

The Commission informally consulted the Customs Expert Group – International Customs Matters Section on the envisaged act between 17 December 2019 and 8 January 2020. The Commission took into account comments received.

3.Position to be taken on the Union's behalf

This proposal for a Council Decision establishes the position to be taken on the Union's behalf in the JCCC set up by the Agreement with regard to the adoption of the rules of procedure of the JCCC.

The Parties to the Agreement agreed to adopt the draft of the document in Annex to the Decision.

4.Legal basis

4.1.Procedural legal basis

4.1.1.Principles

Article 218(9) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) provides for decisions establishing ‘the positions to be adopted on the Union’s behalf in a body set up by an agreement, when that body is called upon to adopt acts having legal effects, with the exception of acts supplementing or amending the institutional framework of the agreement.’

The concept of ‘acts having legal effects’ includes acts that have legal effects by virtue of the rules of international law governing the body in question. It also includes instruments that do not have a binding effect under international law, but that are ‘capable of decisively influencing the content of the legislation adopted by the EU legislature 1 .

4.1.2.Application to the present case

The JCCC is a body set up by an agreement, namely the Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters.

The act that the Joint Committee is called upon to adopt constitutes an act having legal effects. The envisaged act will be binding under international law in accordance with Article 20.2(e) of the Agreement since the rules of procedures will influence the way decisions are made within the JCCC.

The envisaged act does not supplement or amend the institutional framework of the Agreement.

Therefore, the procedural legal basis for the proposed decision is Article 218(9) TFEU.

4.2.Substantive legal basis

4.2.1.Principles

The substantive legal basis for a decision under Article 218(9) TFEU depends primarily on the objective and content of the envisaged act in respect of which a position is taken on the Union's behalf. If the envisaged act pursues two aims or has two components and if one of those aims or components is identifiable as the main one, whereas the other is merely incidental, the decision under Article 218(9) TFEU must be founded on a single substantive legal basis, namely that required by the main or predominant aim or component.

4.2.2.Application to the present case

The main objective and content of the envisaged act relate to the common commercial policy.

Therefore, the substantive legal basis of the proposed decision is Article 207 TFEU.

4.3.Conclusion

The legal basis of the proposed decision should be Article 207 TFEU, in conjunction with Article 218(9) TFEU.

2020/0025 (NLE)

Proposal for a

COUNCIL DECISION

on the position to be taken on behalf of the European Union in the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee established under the Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters as regards the adoption of the internal rules of procedure of the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee

THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION,

Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and in particular Article 207, in conjunction with Article 218(9) thereof,

Having regard to the proposal from the European Commission,

Whereas:

(1)The Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters (‘the Agreement’) was concluded by the Union by Council Decision 2 and entered into force on 1 May 2018.

(2)Pursuant to Article 20(2)(e) of the Agreement, the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee established under Article 20(1) of the Agreement is to adopt its internal rules of procedure.

(3)It is appropriate to establish the position to be taken on the Union's behalf in the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee, as the decision will be binding on the Union.

HAS ADOPTED THIS DECISION:

Article 1

The position to be taken on the Union's behalf in the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee established under the Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters as regards the adoption of its internal rules of procedure shall be based on the draft decision of the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee attached to this Decision.

Article 2

This Decision is addressed to the Commission.

Done at Brussels,

   For the Council

   The President

(1)    Judgment of the Court of Justice of 7 October 2014, Germany v Council, C-399/12, ECLI:EU:C:2014:2258, paragraphs 61 to 64.
(2)    OJ L 101, 20.4.2018, p. 5.
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Brussels, 14.2.2020

COM(2020) 53 final

ANNEX

to the

Proposal for a Council Decision

on the position to be taken on behalf of the European Union in the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee established under the Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on cooperation and mutual administrative assistance in customs matters as regards the adoption of the internal rules of procedure of the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee


DRAFT

DECISION No […/2019] OF THE EUROPEAN UNION-NEW ZEALAND JOINT CUSTOMS COOPERATION COMMITTEE

of …

adopting its Rules of Procedure

THE JOINT CUSTOMS COOPERATION COMMITTEE,

Having regard to the Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on Cooperation and Mutual Administrative Assistance in customs matters, concluded in Brussels on 3 July 2017, and in particular Article 20.2(d) thereof,

Whereas Article 20.2(e) of the Agreement provides that the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee shall adopt its internal rules of procedure,

HAS DECIDED AS FOLLOWS:

Article 1

The Rules of Procedure of the European Union-New Zealand Joint Customs Cooperation Committee, as set out in the Annex to this Decision, are hereby adopted.

Article 2

The Decision shall apply as of its date of adoption.

Article 3

The text of this Decision is drawn up in duplicate in the English language, each of those texts being equally authentic. Each Party may provide for translations into its other official languages.

Done at …, on ….

For the European Union-New Zealand Joint Customs Cooperation Committee

The Co-Chairs

ANNEX

RULES OF PROCEDURE OF THE EUROEPAN UNION-NEW ZEALAND JOINT CUSTOMS COOPERATION COMMITTEE

Article 1

Chairmanship

The European Union-New Zealand Joint Customs Cooperation Committee (hereinafter referred to as “the Joint Committee”) established in accordance with Article 20.1 of the Agreement between the European Union and New Zealand on Cooperation and Mutual Administrative Assistance in customs matters, concluded in Brussels on 3 July 2017 (hereinafter referred to as “the Agreement”) shall be co-chaired by a representative of the European Union and a representative of New Zealand and will perform its duties under Article 20 of the Agreement.

Article 2

Representation

1.    Each Contracting Party to the Agreement shall notify the other Contracting Party to the Agreement of the list of its members of the Joint Committee. The list shall be administered and kept current by the Secretariat of the Joint Committee.

2.    A co-chair of the Joint Committee may be represented by a designee if he or she is unable to attend a meeting. The co-chair, or his or her designee, shall inform in writing the other co-chair and the Secretariat of the Joint Committee of the designation as far in advance of the meeting as possible.

3. The designee of the co-chair of the Joint Committee shall exercise the rights of that co-chair to the extent of the designation. For the purpose of these Rules of Procedure, subsequent references to members and co-chairs of the Joint Committee shall be understood to include the designee.

Article 3

Secretariat of the Joint Committee

An official of the European Union and an official of New Zealand shall act jointly as the Secretariat of the Joint Committee.

 

Article 4

Meetings

1.    The Joint Committee shall meet at the request of either Contracting Party. The meetings shall be held in Brussels and Wellington alternately, unless the co-chairs agree otherwise.

2.    The meetings of the Joint Committee may be held by videoconference or teleconference.

3.    Each meeting of the Joint Committee shall be convened by the Secretariat of the Joint Committee at a date and place decided by the co-chairs.

Article 5

Delegation

The members of the Joint Committee may be accompanied by government officials of the respective Contracting Parties. Before each meeting, each co-chair of the Joint Committee shall inform the other co-chair of the intended composition of the delegation of each Contracting Party.

Article 6

Documents

When the deliberations of the Joint Committee are based on written supporting documents, those documents shall be numbered and circulated by the Secretariat of the Joint Committee as documents of the Joint Committee.

Article 7

Correspondence

1.    Correspondence addressed to the co-chairs of the Joint Committee shall be forwarded to the Secretariat of the Joint Committee for circulation, when appropriate, to the members of the Joint Committee.

shall

2.    Correspondence from the co-chairs of the Joint Committee shall be sent to the recipients by the Secretariat of the Joint Committee and shall be numbered and circulated, where appropriate, to the other members of the Joint Committee.

Article 8

Agenda for the Meetings

1.    A provisional agenda for each meeting shall be drawn up by the Secretariat of the Joint Committee. It shall be forwarded, together with the relevant documents, to the members of the Joint Committee, including the co-chairs no later than 15 calendar days before the beginning of the meeting.

2.    The provisional agenda shall include items in respect of which the Secretariat of the Joint Committee has received a request for inclusion in the agenda by a Contracting Party, together with the relevant documents, no later than 21 calendar days before the beginning of the meeting.

3.    The co-chairs of the Joint Committee shall make public a jointly approved version of the provisional agenda of the Joint Committee.

4.    The agenda shall be adopted by the Joint Committee at the beginning of each meeting. Items other than those appearing on the provisional agenda may be placed on the agenda if the co-chairs so agree.

5.    The co-chairs of the Joint Committee may by mutual consent invite observers, including representatives of other bodies of the Contracting Parties or independent experts, to attend its meetings in order to provide information on specific subjects.

6.    The co-chairs of the Joint Committee may by mutual consent reduce or increase the time periods specified in paragraphs 1 and 2 in order to take account of the requirements of a particular case.

Article 9

Minutes

1.    Draft minutes of each meeting shall be drawn up by the Secretariat of the Joint Committee, within 21 days from the end of the meeting, unless otherwise decided by mutual consent by the co-chairs.

2.    The minutes shall, as a general rule, summarise each item on the agenda, specifying where applicable: (a) the documents submitted to the Joint Committee; (b) any statement that a member of the Joint Committee requested to be entered in the minutes; (c) the decisions adopted; and (d) any measures, recommendations, joint statements and operational conclusions agreed on specific items.

3.    The minutes shall include the final agenda and a list of the names, titles and affiliations of all individuals who attended the meeting in any capacity.

4.    The minutes shall be approved in writing by the co-chairs within 60 days of the date of the meeting or by any other date decided by mutual consent.

5.    The Secretariat of the Joint Committee shall also prepare a draft summary of the minutes. Once the co-chairs of the Joint Committee have approved the text of the summary, they shall make that summary public.

Article 10

Decisions

1.    The Joint Committee shall adopt decisions pursuant to Article 20.2 of the Agreement by mutual consent. Decisions may be adopted, including in periods between meetings of the Joint Committee, by written procedure through an exchange of notes between the Co-Chairs of the Committee.

2.    Each decisions of the Joint Committee shall have a serial number, the date of adoption and a title referring to its subject matter. Each decision shall provide for a date when it comes into effect, and may be subject to the completion of any necessary requirements and procedures of each Contracting Party.

3.    Each decision shall be established in duplicate and signed for the purpose of authentication by the co-chairs of the Joint Committee.

4.    The Contracting Parties shall ensure that the decisions adopted by the Joint Committee are made public.

Article 11

Publicity and Confidentiality

1.    The work of the Joint Committee shall be treated as confidential. Unless both Contracting Parties decide otherwise, the meetings of the Joint Committee shall not be open to the public.

2.    When a Contracting Party submits to the Joint Committee information considered as confidential or protected from disclosure under its laws and regulations, the other Contracting Party shall treat that information as confidential in accordance with Article 17 of the Agreement.

Article 12

Working Language

Unless otherwise agreed by the Contracting Parties, all the correspondence and communication between the Contracting Parties relating to the work of the Joint Committee, as well as the preparation of and deliberations on decisions and recommendations shall be in English.

Article 13

Expenses

1.    Each Contracting Party to the Agreement shall meet any expenses it incurs as a result of participating in the meetings of the Joint Committee.

2.    Expenditure in connection with the organisation of meetings and reproduction of documents shall be borne by the Contracting Party hosting the meeting.

Article 14

Working groups and other bodies

1.    Pursuant to Article 20.3 of the Agreement, the Joint Committee shall set up the appropriate working mechanisms, including working groups, to support its work to implement the Agreement.

2.    The Joint Committee shall supervise the work of all working groups and other bodies established under the Agreement.

3.    The working groups and other bodies established under the Agreement shall report to the Joint Committee on results and conclusions from each of their meetings.

4.    Unless otherwise decided, the present Rules of Procedure shall apply mutatis mutandis to the working groups and other bodies established under the Agreement.

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