Fundamentals of Preferential Rules of Origin, Caribbean, 5th Edition


Thanks to our donors and partner countries: 


Course direction:

Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) (, through its Integration and Trade Sector.


Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) (, through its Integration and Trade Sector in collaboration with The Institute for the Integration of Latin America and the Caribbean (INTAL) (

In collaboration with:

The Inter-American Institute for Economic and Social Development (INDES) ( Contributes to the pedagogical review of the materials and tutor's training.

The Center for Distance Foundation for Economic and Technological Development (CEDDET) ( Works in the academic monitoring of the participants through their virtual learning platform.


General objective:

  • Contribute to train public and private agents involved in the application of Rules of Origin.

Specific objectives:

  • Introduce the issues of Rules of Origin, and their impact and relevance in the trade agreements for both the public and private sectors.

  • Identify and analyze the main components of an origin regime.

  • Describe the main origin regime styles that have an impact in Caribbean and Latin American countries.

  • Show the use and application of several tools developed by the IDB on Rules of Origin.


The course will last six teaching weeks (plus one week for Module 0 and two weeks for retakes) organised in weekly modules.

Course dates: from 8th May until 9th July (9 weeks).

Teaching weeks:  6 weeks.

Target audience:

This course is only open to participants who have been invited to take part by the Directing Body.

A total of 45 participants will be selected. The target audience is mid to high level officials presently working with Rules of Origin in Ministries of Trade or Trade Promotion Organizations or who would prospectively work in this area in the future. 

Participants should possess  at least three (3) years of experience, at least a professional certificate in customs, business, public administration, or some combination thereof. 

Price for the general public:

The price for participants without a grant is 3000 USD.

However, in order to contribute to modernisation and institution building in Latin America and the Caribbean, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has provided 45 grants for all Latin American and Caribbean participants who pass the selection process.

Teaching methods:

This is an online course delivered on a virtual platform on which a small group of participants (45) will all start and finish the training at the same time. During this period, participants will be monitored on a regular basis according to a systematic and individualised monitoring plan. The activities on this course are designed to maximise collaborative learning among participants, and between participants and the course teacher.

Teaching team: 

Course director:

  • Jeremy Tyler Harris.

Mr. Harris has worked as Economist and Integration and Trade Specialist at the Inter-American Development Bank for more than eight years. In this context, Mr. Harris has participated in supporting several trade negotiation processes, including the FTAA and the DR-CAFTA, as well as others within Latin America, with an emphasis on rules of origin and market access. At the IDB he has participated in the design and development of several databases and information systems regarding market access, and has written on preferential trade agreements and their systemic effects on regional and global trade. Outside the IDB he has worked as a consultant for the UN-ECLAC, the CARICOM Secretariat, DFID, and GTZ.  Mr. Harris holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Maryland. 


  • Brian Staples.

Mr. Staples has been providing international trade and customs advisory services to clients in Ottawa since 1981. He is the President of Trade Facilitation Services and founding Director of the Origin Institute. These services include technical trade fundamentals such as customs procedures, customs verification audits and pre-audits, valuation, duty and tax deferral programs and the Harmonized System of Classification combined with significant activity in trade policy matters including trade facilitation. With the signing of the North American Free Trade Agreement more than 20 years ago, Mr. Staples has developed a reputation for experience, expertise and passion for all matters relating to rules of origin including origin determination, declarations, certifications and verifications. In addition to resolving trade problems for private sector clients, Brian has also worked on a wide range of trade, customs and origin related technical assistance and capacity building development projects in dozens of countries around the world for various international and regional institutions including the Inter-American Development Bank, the World Bank, the Canadian government, European development agencies, the Asian Development Bank, the International Trade Center and UNCTAD. Mr. Staples is a member of the joint International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and Inter-American Development Bank’s Rules of Origin Experts Group and member of the ICC’s Commission on Customs and Trade Facilitation.

  • Joyce Andrene Collings.

Jamaican. Andrene Collings has worked for over twenty years with the Government of Jamaica in several senior positions in domestic and international commerce.  She is currently the International Trade Specialist in the Ministry of Industry, Investment and Commerce (MIIC) where she provides technical advice on trade policy issues falling under the Ministry’s extensive portfolio. She is a member of the Minister’s Strategic Team, Vice Chairman of the Standards Council, a Director of the Trade Board Limited and represents the Ministry on several national committees. Mrs. Collings previously worked with Jamaica Promotions (JAMPRO) where she managed the rules of origin portfolio. She attended Georgian College in Canada where she studied Marketing (Distinction) and the University of the West Indies where she pursued Management Studies (First Class Honours). She has completed several specialist courses and holds a Diploma from the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in Advanced Trade Policy.  Mrs. Collings is currently pursuing the MSc Programme in Logistics and Supply Chain Management with the Caribbean Maritime Institute. 



Module 0 : “USING THE VIRTUAL CLASSROOM” (3 days). 

Module 1 : “THE ROLE OF THE ORIGIN REGIME (one week).

  • Characteristics of Preferential Rules of Origin.

  • International Context and the Agreement on Rules of Origin.


  • Some Features of Goods Impacting on Their Status of Origin.

  • Importance of the Harmonized System When Negotiating Rules of Origin.

  • How to Read and Interpret Rules of Origin.

  • Origin Determination Criteria.

  • Change in Tariff Classification.


  • Value Content Concept.

  • Advantages and Disadvantages of the Regional Value Content (RVC).

  • Formulae or Methods Most Widely Used for Calculating Value Content.

  • Accounting and Allocation of the Value of Materials.

  • Regional Value Content. Calculation Adjustments.

  • Technical Requirements.

                                    MID-COURSE CATCH-UP (one week).

 Module 4 : "GENERAL CRITERIA" (one week).

  • Statistical Overview of the Use of Origin Determination Criteria.

  • Defining Rules of Origin.

  • Special Treatment Applied to Some Materials and Inputs Used for Manufacturing or Trading Goods.

  • Remanufactured Products.

  • Cumulation.


  • The Evolution of the Certification of Origin.

  • Origin Certification Methods or Systems.
  • Advantages and Disadvantages of Origin Certification Methods.

  • Certification Innovation.

  • Digital Origin Certification.

  • Origin Verification.


  • Preferential Origin Controls.

  • Post-Importation Origin Verification.

  • Responsibilities in a Declaration of Origin.

  • Convergence Agreements.

  • Application of Extended Accumulation.

  • Negotiating Rules of Origin.

  • Rules of Origin Database and Analysis Tools.

                                  END-OF-COURSE CATCH-UP (One week).


The Inter-American Development Bank (IADB), through its Integration and Trade Sector, will present a diploma to all participants who fulfil the aims of the course and pass the corresponding assessment tests.

The Directing Body, based on each tutor's assessment of participation in the proposed activities, will be responsible for deciding if the participant meets the minimum criteria for receiving the diploma.

Feedback and Quality Improvement:

All participants will be asked to answer a satisfaction survey. The CEDDET Foundation guarantees the responses will remain strictly anonymous since all data is stored on the server of a notary in Spain.

The target audience is mid to high level officials presently working with Rules of Origin in Ministries of Trade or Trade Promotion Organizations, or who would prospectively work in this area in the future

Fundación Ceddet