Discover answers to the ten most frequently asked questions for the Côte d'Ivoire VOC Programme to guide you with your Certificate of Conformity process.
1. What are the objectives of the VOC Côte d’Ivoire programme?
Following the decree n°2017-567, the Ivorian Government put in place the Verification of Conformity (VOC) programme to better protect consumers from substandard, counterfeit and potentially dangerous goods.
2. How do I know if a product is subject to a COC?
The product must cover the following two conditions:
- FOB value greater than or equal to 1525€
- Product HS code must be listed in the regulated product list
3. Who should make the Certificate Of Conformity request?
The request for a COC must be made by the exporter to the local Cotecna office.
4. What is the process to obtain a Certificate of Conformity (COC)?
The CoC will be delivered based on one of the following standards: Ivorian Standards, Regional Standards (ARSO, ECOWAS…), International Standards or Manufacturers Specifications.
The Verification of conformity process requires 2 steps:
- The review of the following documentation to assess the conformity of the products
- Request for Certificate Form fully complete.
- Proforma or Final Invoice
- Certificate of Analysis or Test Report of a laboratory (In-house or accredited Lab) or Datasheet of the product
- The issuance of the Certificate of Conformity requires the following mandatory documents:
- Final Invoice
- Copy of the Import Declaration Form (information from the importer)
5. Are used or second-hand products subject to the Côte d’Ivoire Conformity Assessment Programme?
Used or second-hand products whose HS code is listed in the file of products submitted to the VOC programme, their expedition require a COC.
6. What should I do if the FOB value of my shipment is less than 1525€ or not on the regulated product list?
If the FOB value is less than 1525€ or if your product is not listed in the regulated product list, the Certificate of Conformity is not mandatory. Nevertheless, some importers request a voluntary Certificate Of Conformity (COC). In this case, this request will follow the usual COC process.
7. Who should pay COC fees? Would it be possible to pay COC fees at the Cote d'Ivoire office?
The Ministry of Commerce has established that this Verification of Conformity programme is an exporter programme. Therefore, the Cotecna office you will be collaborating with will issue the invoice directly to the exporter. The latter has the possibility to re-bill his importer who will in turn transfer the costs to him according to the FINEX guide.
8. What is the COC fee for an expedition?
All service providers such as Cotecna, charge the fees according to the valuation method applied according to Routes A, B or C:
(% of declared FOB value)
|Minimum fee in EUR||Maximum fee in EUR|
|A - For exporters with infrequent shipments or sensitive products||0.45%||300||4,100|
|B - For exporters with regular shipments with non-sensitive homogeneous products||0.40%||285||3,890|
|C - For manufacturers official distributors and brand owners with regular and high-volume shipments to Côte d’Ivoire and having a QMS applied to their production/manufacturing process||0.30%||255||3,480|
9. What are the criteria to pass from Route A to Route B or C?
For the first time, the products must go validate the requirements of Route A.
Then, depending on the supplier’s profile, they will be able to qualify to route B or C following the process:
- Route B: Frequent Suppliers / Exporters with Registered Products
- The request of registered products approved by Cotecna office (valid one year renewable)
- Shipment the product cover to the registered without a physical inspection
- Route C: Licensed Products (Product Certification System). This route is dedicated to manufacturers, their official distributors or brand owners.
- The request of licensed products approved by the COTECNA office (Valid one year renewable)
- Shipment the product cover to the licensed without a physical inspection
Note: Cotecna might proceed to random physical inspection of the shipments to be sent, with a minimum of one shipment inspection per year.
10. How long will it take Cotecna to issue a Certificate of Conformity?
Following your first contact, a dedicated and local coordinator will get back to you within 24 hours. Your dedicated Cotecna coordinator will then review your documentation and will schedule the inspection if necessary. Once the conformity is successful, Cotecna will issue your Certificate of Conformity within 48 hours.