The European Commission has adopted a regulation that rearranges the monthly quota of olive oil originating in Tunisia between February 1 and October 31, 2015 to facilitate their export to the EU. This decision increases the total export potential for the months of February and March of 5000 to 18,000 tonnes (9,000 tons per month), followed by 8,000 tons from April to October.
This flexibility will enable Tunisian operators to maximize their olive oil export paying no tariffs to the EU, and thereby taking full advantage from an excellent season. Olive oil is the main agricultural export from Tunisia to the European Union. The olive sector is vital for the economy: it directly and indirectly employs over one million people, or about 1 / 5th of the national agricultural employment.
This measure shows EU's full commitment to deepen its privileged partnership with Tunisia as the country progresses in a resolutely democratic way. After the parliamentary and presidential elections, the EU is determined to support politically and financially the new authorities for the necessary reforms to consolidate democratic gains and to face the socio-economic challenges of the country.
Based on the Association Agreement between the EU and Tunisia, Tunisian exports of olive oil to the EU are subject to an annual quota of 56,700 tonnes. The management of this quota is limited by the maximum monthly quantities that are defined in Regulation (EC) No 1918/2006. The measure applies to the 2015 campaign and does not change the overall amount of the annual quota.
At the request of Tunisia, the Commission has decided to increase the monthly quota to allow Tunisian operators to make the most of their export potential. The Commission has therefore adopted a new regulation to waive the regulations cited above, that applies from 1st February.
Source: European Commission