The Prime Ministers of CEFTA countries (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia) signed a Protocol regarding the definition of the term "original products" and the methods of administrative co-operation, and a Protocol on the liberalisation of trade in industrial goods.

As a result of the above, new rules of the goods origin will be introduced within CEFTA with effect from 1 January 1997.

The new rules, under which certain products will no longer acquire the origin of the processing country and vice-versa, virtually copy the same principles for the origin of goods as stipulated in the Free Trade Agreement between the Czech Republic and Bulgaria (published in the Collection of laws under no. 223/1996 Coll.).

As an exception to the new CEFTA rules of origin, alternative rules will apply within the Czech-Slovak Customs Union on glass, tobacco and oil products.

The meeting was also attended by the representatives of Latvia and Lithuania, and by prime ministers of Bulgaria, Lithuania and Romania. CEFTA prime ministers agreed to begin talks on Romania's joining the organisation.

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