Access2Markets: tips for consultants

Some keys to understanding the new Access2Markets portal, the European Union's information support for resources and market news


Planning Internationalisation International marketing Market Accessibility

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Over four months have passed since the European Directorate General for Trade announced the launch of the new Access2Markets portal1, the information support of the EU to obtain resources and news about the European and Non-European markets and on their accessibility, in addition to the historical Market Access DataBase. During these months, therefore, we used and referred to the portal, and we would like to share our point of view about it.

Firstly, we consider this website as a rich and clearly structured source of information (even though sometimes not so intuitive and easy to use), and we retain that it could become an important instrument for training and updating of the export consultant.
The following gives a few examples of valuable information to find and give us some additional guidelines about how to use the portal.

Practical Elements

The new website is modern and easy to use thanks to the first menu on the homepage that enable us to achieve the relevant information.

From the menu, you can access to the following Sections:
  • Goods: everything that a consultant needs to know about the marketing of products, with practical guides, and existing statistics;
  • Services: guides and information about export and import of services, with existing statistics;
  • Investment: section regarding investment liberalization and investment protection, the type and the control of the investments;
  • Markets: useful to obtain information regarding tariffs, taxes, procedures and formalities, documents, requirements and origin rules about a given European or Non-European Country;
  • Toolbox: containing elements helping the website navigation and an interpretation of the results obtained by the research;
  • My Trade Assistant: a very important section to obtain precise information about the products marketed from Country to Country, of European origin or not.

The product name or customs code is mandatory, together with its country of origin and the country of destination.

Once you started the search, this menu appears on the left side of the web page, as a consultant could rapidly interact on the website. Whilst, on the opposite side, Access2Markets presents an index of the contents of the selected section.

The opportunity to modify the language and the presence of a search bar personalized by the user make the website accessible to every body. Access2Markets clearly reports the updating date of the information provided, a section about “How to read the results” useful for eventual misunderstandings of the data.

Elements worthy of attention

Access2Markets is different by its predecessor, Market Access Database, not only for the elements above mentioned, but principally for the presence of some sections considered very useful by the consultants.

The website of the European Commission provides Information about products’ tariff and taxes, customs procedures, rules of origin, trade barriers, statistics for all the UE countries and for more than 120 export markets all over the world.

In particular, we highlight the section regarding:
  • Rules of Origin: detailed information to know, elementary information, practical guides to work with the rules of origins, glossary to understand the terms used. To respect the rules of origins permits to benefit from reduced rates for export and import.
    To enter the section, you need to click on the icon “Rules of Origin” on the blue bar in the centre of the website.

  • The picture shows the content of the page once you start searching. From general requirements to the more detailed ones. The menu on the left helps to make an easy search, while links inside the text allows to better understand the subject.

    Using “My Trade Assistant on the main menu of the Home Page you can know the rules of origin of a given product in a given country.
  • Trade Agreements: it shows all the commercial agreements in the EU with all the countries all over in the world. To benefit from lower tariffs and other advantages that EU Agreements offer.

  • Among these advantages, there are lower or no tariffs, simpler customs procedures, mutual recognition of the certificates, access on investment, rights on intellectual property. To enter this section you must click on the icon “Trade agreements” on the blue bar at the centre of the site.
    The picture shows the content of the webpage once you start searching.

    To know in detail the trade agreements related to a given country, the section “Markets” – “Non-EU Markets” on the homepage gives a help (see below).


For an export consultant the Access2Markets website is an important resource to provide information on a market to be used by the exporting companies to enter a new market and to consolidate their habitual markets.
The website is clear and easy to understand, available in many languages and rich in information that can be used to facilitate European trade in the year 2021, that premise to improve with respect to 2020.

1) See our article of 27th October 2020: "The New Access2markets Portal: Information Support on Market Accessibility for Companies Exporting in the EU".