The South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA) is the free trade agreement of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). The agreement entered into force in 2006 and came into force with the 1993 ASAC preferential trade agreement. SAFTA`s signatory countries are Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. For the purposes of implementing the rules of origin under Rule 14 of the SAFTA rules of origin, the following operational certification procedures are to be followed: AUTHORITY ARTICLE 1 The certificate of origin is issued by the authority designated by the government of the export contracting state (hereafter referred to as the “issuing authority”) and notified to the other contracting states. ARTICLE 2, point a) Each State Party informs the other States Parties of the names and addresses of the officials authorized to issue the certificate of origin and presents their official signatures and stamps. b) Any change to their official name, address or seal is communicated immediately to other contracting states. ARTICLE 3 In order to verify the conditions of preferential treatment, the issuing authority has the right to request proof or to carry out any control deemed appropriate. PRE-EXPORTATION VERIFICATION ARTICLE 4 On written request from the manufacturer and/or exporter of products that wish to receive preferential treatment, the issuing authority verifies the prior importation of the production site or sites. The result of the audit, which must be reviewed regularly or, if necessary, accepted as proof of the origin of the products exported at a later date. Pre-export export verification cannot apply to products whose origin can be easily verified by nature. REQUEST FOR ISSUANCE OF CERTIFICATE OF ORIGIN ARTICLE 5 At the time of the implementation of the preferential treatment export procedures, the exporter or his authorized representative presents the completed certificate of origin, along with appropriate documentation indicating that the products to be exported are likely to be subject to the issuance of a certificate of origin. PRE-EXPORTATION EXAMINATION ARTICLE 6 For each application for a certificate of origin, the issuing authority performs, in all the best possible ways, an appropriate check to ensure that: (a) the certificate of origin is duly completed and signed by the authorized signatory; (b) the origin of the product is consistent with the rules of origin of this agreement; (c) the other mentions/registrations of the certificate of origin correspond to the supporting documents provided; d) HS, z.B.b code.