Prejsť na hlavný obsah
Country or region
Trade topics
Negotiations and agreements

The EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) can make life easier for SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) from both sides to export and import.

Almost all tariffs have been eliminated or reduced. Import requirements have been simplified where possible, including customs procedures, rules of origin or technical regulations.

The agreement’s SME chapter says that the EU and Japan should provide information on access to each other’s market.

Guidance for businesses

Extra support

Additional information for SMEs

Prepare the customs documents

Rules of origin

Make sure you follow the rules of origin to benefit the most from the EPA. A statement of origin is needed to certify that your goods come from Japan when they enter the EU (or from the EU if the goods enter Japan).

The full rules and procedures are available in the agreement’s rules of origin chapter (Chapter 3 of the EPA).

Pay the correct customs and excise duties

General EU information on taxation at the border.

Follow the rules on patents, innovations, intellectual property, geographical indications (food and drink specialties, etc.)

Other sources of information:

Follow the EU’s technical regulations

Goods can only appear on the EU market if a manufacturer makes sure it meets all the EU requirements i.e. - passing a "conformity assessment"

Other regulations include:

CE marking

The CE marking to a product, A manufacturer puts a CE marking on a product to show that the product meets all the high safety, health, and environmental protection requirements to be sold throughout the European Economic Area (EEA).

Harmonised standards

Manufacturers, other economic operators, or conformity assessment bodies can use harmonised standards to demonstrate that products, services, or processes comply with relevant EU legislation.

Three European Standards Organisations can develop these standards : CEN, CENELEC, or ETSI. It is created following a request from the European Commission to one of these organisations.

Notified bodies

A notified body is an organisation designated by an EU country to check the conformity of certain products before being placed on the market. The European Commission publishes a list of such notified bodies.

Follow the EU’s rules on animal, plant and food safety

Bid for a government contract in the EU (public procurement)

Set up your business in the EU

These are e-government portals that allow service providers to get the information they need and complete administrative procedures online, including setting up a new company.

EU Trade Helpdesk

The EU Trade Helpdesk uses your product’s tariff nomenclature code to provide you information on how to bring your product on the EU market.

The EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation

This venture between the European Commission and the Japanese Government promotes industrial, trade and investment cooperation exchanging experience and know-how between EU and Japanese businesses. This centre is the Japanese member of the Enterprise Europe Network.

Enterprise Europe Network

This is the world's largest support network for SMEs. It has 3,000 experts across 600 organisations in more than 60 countries. Members include chambers of commerce and industry, technology centres, and research institutes.

Japanese website for SMEs from the EU

This website dedicated for European SMEs includes links to authorities on specific trade issues and a searchable database by customs tariff code to get market access information for the Japanese market.

Japanese trade – European Commission

The DG Trade website provides the trade policy information about Japan. Documents range from text of agreements to statistics.


TARIC, the integrated Tariff of the European Union, is a multilingual database integrating all measures relating to EU customs tariff, commercial and agricultural legislation.

The TARIC includes tariff measures, quotas, agricultural measures, antidumping duties and countervailing duties, import and export prohibitions and restrictions, surveillance of movements of goods at import and export.

Overview of the agreement

Official texts on EPA