The United Kingdom has launched a ‘Developing Countries Trading Scheme’ (DCTS) trading plan, to increase access to product imports from developing countries for UK businesses, which includes expanding animal feed and pet food ingredients imports.
The scheme was launched to help developing countries grow and prosper, with tariff cuts extended to products imported from 65 developing countries (spread across Africa, Asia, Oceania, and the Americas), therefore building the UK’s commitment to mutually beneficial relationships with emerging economies. The plan will benefit British businesses and consumers with lower prices and more variety.
This scheme aims to promote a more active global trading system, whilst reducing import costs, supporting economically vulnerable countries worldwide, and helping the cost of living. It demonstrates the UK’s push to drive free trade, a pro-growth agenda worldwide, and seeks to eradicate poverty.
Since the UK separated from the European Union in 2020, the UK has been using the Generalised Scheme of Preferences (GSP) which will be replaced by the DCTS. With the UK’s updated status as an independent trading nation, the DCTS will allegedly go beyond the EU’s GSP, as it offers cuts to more products including foods not widely produced in the UK such as animal feed and pet food ingredients.
Retailing pet food will no longer be included in the standard preferences tariff, (valued at 0% in the enhanced preferences tariff & the comprehensive preferences tariff), and seasonal tariffs will be removed. Simpler trading rules and requirements will be put in place, such as the rules of origin being made easier for businesses to export their products.
In 2021, the UK imported 1.02 million tonnes of pet food under HS Code 2309 with product-specific rules and requirements (more than half being for retail pet food), however, now the DCTS will allow for tariff address changes with no processing requirements.
Pet ownership is on the rise, with the European Pet food industry federation (FEDIAF) reporting that in 2021 33 percent of UK households own at least one dog, and 27 percent of UK households own at least one cat. The DCTS could offer significant opportunities for pet nutrition processors in developing countries.
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