Wto Regional Trade Agreements Information System

October 17, 2021 at 2:55 pm

Article V of the GATS regulates free trade agreements in the area of trade in services for both developed and developing country members. By default, the information provided by RTA-IS relates to reported RTAs that are in effect, but it is also possible to retrieve information on reported but not yet promulgated RTAs and inactive RTAs. The Committee on Regional Trade Agreements (CRTA) reviews individual regional agreements and is also responsible for holding discussions on the systemic impact of agreements on the multilateral trading system. The mandate of the CRTA can be found in WT/L/127. The presidency is. The WTO Agreements recognize that RTAs can benefit countries if their objective is to facilitate trade between their parties. They also recognize that, in certain circumstances, these agreements could harm the commercial interests of other countries. Normally, the establishment of a customs union or free trade area would violate the WTO`s principle of non-discrimination against all WTO Members (“most-favoured-nation treatment”). However, Article 24 of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), Article 5 of the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and the enabling clause (paragraph 2(c)) allow WTO Members to conclude RTAs as a special exception, provided that certain strict criteria are met. In particular, the agreements should contribute to a more fluidity of trade between RTA countries without creating barriers to trade with the outside world.

In other words, regional integration should complement the multilateral trading system, not threaten it. Opinions are divided on the impact of the RTA on the liberalization of world trade. Although RTAs are designed to benefit signatory countries, the expected benefits can be undermined if distortions in resource allocation and diversion of trade and investment are not minimized. An agreement with “partial scope” (PS). The “partial scope”, which is not defined or mentioned in the WTO agreement, means that the agreement covers only certain products. Agreements with partial scope shall be notified in accordance with point (a) of paragraph 4 of the enabling clause. WTO Members that conclude TAs are required to notify such TAs to the WTO either in accordance with Article XXIV of gatt 1994, or the enabling clause (for ART for trade in goods) or Article V of the GATS (for TRs for trade in services). In the case of an ATR covering both goods and services, two notifications are required. Notification should take place after the ratification of the RTA and before the application of preferential treatment between the Parties. This option allows you to select an RTA from the list of short RTA titles in alphabetical order.

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