The texts reproduced here do not have the legal standing of the original documents which are entrusted and kept at the WTO Secretariat in Geneva.
Also in this section:
- Language Incorporating GATT 1947 and other Instruments into GATT 1994
- Article I
- Article II
- Article III
- Article IV
- Article V
- Article VI
- Article VII
- Article VIII
- Article IX
- Article X
- Article XI
- Article XII
- Article XIII
- Article XIV
- Article XV
- Article XVI
- Article XVII
- Article XVIII
- Article XIX
- Article XX
- Article XXI
- Article XXII
- Article XXIII
- Article XXIV
- Article XXV
- Article XXVI
- Article XXVII
- Article XXVIII
- Article XXVIII bis
- Article XXIX
- Article XXX
- Article XXXI
- Article XXXII
- Article XXXIII
- Article XXXIV
- Article XXXV
- Article XXXVI
- Article XXXVII
- Article XXXVIII
- Table of Regional Trade Agreements Notified to the GATT/WTO and in Force, as of 30 September 2011
XXVIII. Article XXVI
Article XXVI: Acceptance, Entry into Force and Registration
2. This Agreement shall be open for acceptance by any contracting party which, on 1 March 1955, was a contracting party or was negotiating with a view to accession to this Agreement.
3. This Agreement, done in a single English original and a single French original, both texts authentic, shall be deposited with the Secretary-General of the United Nations, who shall furnish certified copies thereof to all interested governments.
4. Each government accepting this Agreement shall deposit an instrument of acceptance with the Executive Secretary(5) to the Contracting Parties, who will inform all interested governments of the date of deposit of each instrument of acceptance and of the day on which this Agreement enters into force under paragraph 6 of this Article.
(footnote original) 5 By the Decision of 23 March 1965, the CONTRACTING PARTIES changed the title of the head of the GATT secretariat from “Executive Secretary” to “Director-General”.
5. (a) Each government accepting this Agreement does so in respect of its metropolitan territory and of the other territories for which it has international responsibility, except such separate customs territories as it shall notify to the Executive Secretary(5) to the CONTRACTING PARTIES at the time of its own acceptance.
(b) Any government, which has so notified the Executive Secretary(5) under the exceptions in subparagraph (a) of this paragraph, may at any time give notice to the Executive Secretary(5) that its acceptance shall be effective in respect of any separate customs territory or territories so excepted and such notice shall take effect on the thirtieth day following the day on which it is received by the Executive Secretary.(5)
(c) If any of the customs territories, in respect of which a contracting party has accepted this Agreement, possesses or acquires full autonomy in the conduct of its external commercial relations and of the other matters provided for in this Agreement, such territory shall, upon sponsorship through a declaration by the responsible contracting party establishing the above-mentioned fact, be deemed to be a contracting party.
6. This Agreement shall enter into force, as among the governments which have accepted it, on the thirtieth day following the day on which instruments of acceptance have been deposited with the Executive Secretary(6) to the Contracting Parties on behalf of governments named in Annex H, the territories of which account for 85 per centum of the total external trade of the territories of such governments, computed in accordance with the applicable column of percentages set forth therein. The instrument of acceptance of each other government shall take effect on the thirtieth day following the day on which such instrument has been deposited.
(footnote original) 6 By the Decision of 23 March 1965, the CONTRACTING PARTIES changed the title of the head of the GATT secretariat from “Executive Secretary” to “Director-General”.
7. The United Nations is authorized to effect registration of this Agreement as soon as it enters into force.
1063. References to the “date of this Agreement” appear in Articles II:1 (specifying the operative date for binding “other duties and charges” with respect to items in schedules of concessions); II:6 (fixing the base date for par values of currencies, for application of provisions on adjustment of specific duties in the event of a reduction in par value); and in Articles V:6, VII:4(d) and X:3(c) (permitting retention of measures existing on “the date of this Agreement” with respect to direct consignment requirements, currency conversion for customs valuation purposes, or review of administrative action relating to customs matters).
1065. Article XXVI:1 provides that “the date of this Agreement shall be 30 October 1947.” This date applies for the obligations under Article V:6 of the original contracting parties to the GATT 1947; the former dependent territories of the original contracting parties which, after attaining independence or commercial autonomy, succeeded to contracting party status under Article XXVI:5(c); and Chile. For contracting parties that acceded in 1948–1951, the date used was 24 March 1948. For all accessions to the GATT 1947 thereafter, the accession protocol provided that the “date of this Agreement” for the purposes of Article V:6 was the date of the protocol of accession or (where the acceding government had previously acceded provisionally) the date of the protocol of provisional accession.(1487) These accession protocol provisions are incorporated in the GATT 1994 by virtue of paragraph 1(b)(ii) of the GATT 1994 incorporation text.
1068. Regarding acceptance, entry into force, deposit and registration of the WTO Agreement, see the material on the relevant provisions of WTO Articles XIV and XVI in the Chapter on the WTO Agreement.
1069. Regarding GATT practice in respect of Article XXVI.
1070. Regarding the provisional application of the GATT 1947 and the termination thereof, see the GATT Analytical Index chapters on Provisional Application of the General Agreement and on Institutions and Procedure.
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XXIX. Article XXVII
Article XXVII: Withholding or Withdrawal of Concessions
Any contracting party shall at any time be free to withhold or to withdraw in whole or in part any concession, provided for in the appropriate Schedule annexed to this Agreement, in respect of which such contracting party determines that it was initially negotiated with a government which has not become, or has ceased to be, a contracting party. A contracting party taking such action shall notify the CONTRACTING PARTIES and, upon request, consult with contracting parties which have a substantial interest in the product concerned.
“After the schedule annexed to this Protocol has become a Schedule to GATT 1994 pursuant to the provisions of paragraph 1, such Member shall be free at any time to withhold or to withdraw in whole or in part the concession in such Schedule with respect to any product for which the principal supplier is any other Uruguay Round participant the schedule of which has not yet become a Schedule to GATT 1994. Such action can, however, only be taken after written notice of any such withholding or withdrawal of a concession has been given to the Council for Trade in Goods and after consultations have been held, upon request, with any Member, the relevant schedule relating to which has become a Schedule to GATT 1994 and which has a substantial interest in the product involved. Any concessions so withheld or withdrawn shall be applied on and after the day on which the schedule of the Member which has the principal supplying interest becomes a Schedule to the GATT 1994.”
1072. On GATT practice in respect of Article XXVII.
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XXX. Article XXVIII
Article XXVIII*: Modification of Schedules
1. On the first day of each three-year period, the first period beginning on 1 January 1958 (or on the first day of any other period* that may be specified by the CONTRACTING PARTIES by two-thirds of the votes cast) a contracting party (hereafter in this Article referred to as the “applicant contracting party”) may, by negotiation and agreement with any contracting party with which such concession was initially negotiated and with any other contracting party determined by the CONTRACTING PARTIES to have a principal supplying interest* (which two preceding categories of contracting parties, together with the applicant contracting party, are in this Article hereinafter referred to as the “contracting parties primarily concerned”), and subject to consultation with any other contracting party determined by the CONTRACTING PARTIES to have a substantial interest* in such concession, modify or withdraw a concession* included in the appropriate schedule annexed to this Agreement.
2. In such negotiations and agreement, which may include provision for compensatory adjustment with respect to other products, the contracting parties concerned shall endeavour to maintain a general level of reciprocal and mutually advantageous concessions not less favourable to trade than that provided for in this Agreement prior to such negotiations.
3. (a) If agreement between the contracting parties primarily concerned cannot be reached before 1 January 1958 or before the expiration of a period envisaged in paragraph 1 of this Article, the contracting party which proposes to modify or withdraw the concession shall, nevertheless, be free to do so and if such action is taken any contracting party with which such concession was initially negotiated, any contracting party determined under paragraph 1 to have a principal supplying interest and any contracting party determined under paragraph 1 to have a substantial interest shall then be free not later than six months after such action is taken, to withdraw, upon the expiration of thirty days from the day on which written notice of such withdrawal is received by the CONTRACTING PARTIES, substantially equivalent concessions initially negotiated with the applicant contracting party.
(b) If agreement between the contracting parties primarily concerned is reached but any other contracting party determined under paragraph 1 of this Article to have a substantial interest is not satisfied, such other contracting party shall be free, not later than six months after action under such agreement is taken, to withdraw, upon the expiration of thirty days from the day on which written notice of such withdrawal is received by the CONTRACTING PARTIES, substantially equivalent concessions initially negotiated with the applicant contracting party.
4. The CONTRACTING PARTIES may, at any time, in special circumstances, authorize* a contracting party to enter into negotiations for modification or withdrawal of a concession included in the appropriate Schedule annexed to this Agreement subject to the following procedures and conditions:
(b) If agreement between the contracting parties primarily concerned is reached in the negotiations, the provisions of paragraph 3 (b) of this Article shall apply.
(c) If agreement between the contracting parties primarily concerned is not reached within a period of sixty days* after negotiations have been authorized, or within such longer period as the CONTRACTING PARTIES may have prescribed, the applicant contracting party may refer the matter to the CONTRACTING PARTIES.
(d) Upon such reference, the CONTRACTING PARTIES shall promptly examine the matter and submit their views to the contracting parties primarily concerned with the aim of achieving a settlement. If a settlement is reached, the provisions of paragraph 3 (b) shall apply as if agreement between the contracting parties primarily concerned had been reached. If no settlement is reached between the contracting parties primarily concerned, the applicant contracting party shall be free to modify or withdraw the concession, unless the CONTRACTING PARTIES determine that the applicant contracting party has unreasonably failed to offer adequate compensation.* If such action is taken, any contracting party with which the concession was initially negotiated, any contracting party determined under paragraph 4 (a) to have a principal supplying interest and any contracting party determined under paragraph 4 (a) to have a substantial interest, shall be free, not later than six months after such action is taken, to modify or withdraw, upon the expiration of thirty days from the day on which written notice of such withdrawal is received by the CONTRACTING PARTIES, substantially equivalent concessions initially negotiated with the applicant contracting party.
5. Before 1 January 1958 and before the end of any period envisaged in paragraph 1 a contracting party may elect by notifying the CONTRACTING PARTIES to reserve the right, for the duration of the next period, to modify the appropriate Schedule in accordance with the procedures of paragraphs 1 to 3. If a contracting party so elects, other contracting parties shall have the right, during the same period, to modify or withdraw, in accordance with the same procedures, concessions initially negotiated with that contracting party.
Ad Article XXVIII
The CONTRACTING PARTIES and each contracting party concerned should arrange to conduct the negotiations and consultations with the greatest possible secrecy in order to avoid premature disclosure of details of prospective tariff changes. The CONTRACTING PARTIES shall be informed immediately of all changes in national tariffs resulting from recourse to this Article.
1. If the CONTRACTING PARTIES specify a period other than a three-year period, a contracting party may act pursuant to paragraph 1 or paragraph 3 of Article XXVIII on the first day following the expiration of such other period and, unless the CONTRACTING PARTIES have again specified another period, subsequent periods will be three-year periods following the expiration of such specified period.
2. The provision that on 1 January 1958, and on other days determined pursuant to paragraph 1, a contracting party “may … modify or withdraw a concession” means that on such day, and on the first day after the end of each period, the legal obligation of such contracting party under Article II is altered; it does not mean that the changes in its customs tariff should necessarily be made effective on that day. If a tariff change resulting from negotiations undertaken pursuant to this Article is delayed, the entry into force of any compensatory concessions may be similarly delayed.
3. Not earlier than six months, nor later than three months, prior to 1 January 1958, or to the termination date of any subsequent period, a contracting party wishing to modify or withdraw any concession embodied in the appropriate Schedule, should notify the CONTRACTING PARTIES to this effect. The CONTRACTING PARTIES shall then determine the contracting party or contracting parties with which the negotiations or consultations referred to in paragraph 1 shall take place. Any contracting party so determined shall participate in such negotiations or consultations with the applicant contracting party with the aim of reaching agreement before the end of the period. Any extension of the assured life of the Schedules shall relate to the Schedules as modified after such negotiations, in accordance with paragraphs 1, 2, and 3 of Article XXVIII. If the CONTRACTING PARTIES are arranging for multilateral tariff negotiations to take place within the period of six months before 1 January 1958, or before any other day determined pursuant to paragraph 1, they shall include in the arrangements for such negotiations suitable procedures for carrying out the negotiations referred to in this paragraph.
4. The object of providing for the participation in the negotiation of any contracting party with a principle supplying interest, in addition to any contracting party with which the concession was originally negotiated, is to ensure that a contracting party with a larger share in the trade affected by the concession than a contracting party with which the concession was originally negotiated shall have an effective opportunity to protect the contractual right which it enjoys under this Agreement. On the other hand, it is not intended that the scope of the negotiations should be such as to make negotiations and agreement under Article XXVIII unduly difficult nor to create complications in the application of this Article in the future to concessions which result from negotiations there under. Accordingly, the CONTRACTING PARTIES should only determine that a contracting party has a principal supplying interest if that contracting party has had, over a reasonable period of time prior to the negotiations, a larger share in the market of the applicant contracting party than a contracting party with which the concession was initially negotiated or would, in the judgement of the CONTRACTING PARTIES, have had such a share in the absence of discriminatory quantitative restrictions maintained by the applicant contracting party. It would therefore not be appropriate for the CONTRACTING PARTIES to determine that more than one contracting party, or in those exceptional cases where there is near equality more than two contracting parties, had a principal supplying interest.
5. Notwithstanding the definition of a principal supplying interest in note 4 to paragraph 1, the CONTRACTING PARTIES may exceptionally determine that a contracting party has a principal supplying interest if the concession in question affects trade which constitutes a major part of the total exports of such contracting party.
6. It is not intended that provision for participation in the negotiations of any contracting party with a principal supplying interest, and for consultation with any contracting party having a substantial interest in the concession which the applicant contracting party is seeking to modify or withdraw, should have the effect that it should have to pay compensation or suffer retaliation greater than the withdrawal or modification sought, judged in the light of the conditions of trade at the time of the proposed withdrawal or modification, making allowance for any discriminatory quantitative restrictions maintained by the applicant contracting party.
7. The expression “substantial interest” is not capable of a precise definition and accordingly may present difficulties for the CONTRACTING PARTIES. It is, however, intended to be construed to cover only those contracting parties which have, or in the absence of discriminatory quantitative restrictions affecting their exports could reasonably be expected to have, a significant share in the market of the contracting party seeking to modify or withdraw the concession.
1. Any request for authorization to enter into negotiations shall be accompanied by all relevant statistical and other data. A decision on such request shall be made within thirty days of its submission.
2. It is recognized that to permit certain contracting parties, depending in large measure on a relatively small number of primary commodities and relying on the tariff as an important aid for furthering diversification of their economies or as an important source of revenue, normally to negotiate for the modification or withdrawal of concessions only under paragraph 1 of Article XXVIII, might cause them at such time to make modifications or withdrawals which in the long run would prove unnecessary. To avoid such a situation the CONTRACTING PARTIES shall authorize any such contracting party, under paragraph 4, to enter into negotiations unless they consider this would result in, or contribute substantially towards, such an increase in tariff levels as to threaten the stability of the Schedules to this Agreement or lead to undue disturbance of international trade.
3. It is expected that negotiations authorized under paragraph 4 for modification or withdrawal of a single item, or a very small group of items, could normally be brought to a conclusion in sixty days. It is recognized, however, that such a period will be inadequate for cases involving negotiations for the modification or withdrawal of a larger number of items and in such cases, therefore, it would be appropriate for the CONTRACTING PARTIES to prescribe a longer period.
4. The determination referred to in paragraph 4 (d) shall be made by the CONTRACTING PARTIES within thirty days of the submission of the matter to them unless the applicant contracting party agrees to a longer period.
5. In determining under paragraph 4 (d) whether an applicant contracting party has unreasonably failed to offer adequate compensation, it is understood that the CONTRACTING PARTIES will take due account of the special position of a contracting party which has bound a high proportion of its tariffs at very low rates of duty and to this extent has less scope than other contracting parties to make compensatory adjustment.
Members hereby agree as follows:
1. For the purposes of modification or withdrawal of a concession, the Member which has the highest ratio of exports affected by the concession (i.e. exports of the product to the market of the Member modifying or withdrawing the concession) to its total exports shall be deemed to have a principal supplying interest if it does not already have an initial negotiating right or a principal supplying interest as provided for in paragraph 1 of Article XXVIII. It is however agreed that this paragraph will be reviewed by the Council for Trade in Goods five years from the date of entry into force of the WTO Agreement with a view to deciding whether this criterion has worked satisfactorily in securing a redistribution of negotiating rights in favour of small and medium-sized exporting Members. If this is not the case, consideration will be given to possible improvements, including, in the light of the availability of adequate data, the adoption of a criterion based on the ratio of exports affected by the concession to exports to all markets of the product in question.
2. Where a Member considers that it has a principal supplying interest in terms of paragraph 1, it should communicate its claim in writing, with supporting evidence, to the Member proposing to modify or withdraw a concession, and at the same time inform the Secretariat. Paragraph 4 of the “Procedures for Negotiations under Article XXVIII” adopted on 10 November 1980 (BISD 27S/26–28) shall apply in these cases.
3. In the determination of which Members have a principal supplying interest (whether as provided for in paragraph 1 above or in paragraph 1 of Article XXVIII) or substantial interest, only trade in the affected product which has taken place on an MFN basis shall be taken into consideration. However, trade in the affected product which has taken place under non-contractual preferences shall also be taken into account if the trade in question has ceased to benefit from such preferential treatment, thus becoming MFN trade, at the time of the negotiation for the modification or withdrawal of the concession, or will do so by the conclusion of that negotiation.
4. When a tariff concession is modified or withdrawn on a new product (i.e. a product for which three years’ trade statistics are not available) the Member possessing initial negotiating rights on the tariff line where the product is or was formerly classified shall be deemed to have an initial negotiating right in the concession in question. The determination of principal supplying and substantial interests and the calculation of compensation shall take into account, inter alia, production capacity and investment in the affected product in the exporting Member and estimates of export growth, as well as forecasts of demand for the product in the importing Member. For the purposes of this paragraph, “new product” is understood to include a tariff item created by means of a breakout from an existing tariff line.
5. Where a Member considers that it has a principal supplying or a substantial interest in terms of paragraph 4, it should communicate its claim in writing, with supporting evidence, to the Member proposing to modify or withdraw a concession, and at the same time inform the Secretariat. Paragraph 4 of the above-mentioned “Procedures for Negotiations under Article XXVIII” shall apply in these cases.
6. When an unlimited tariff concession is replaced by a tariff rate quota, the amount of compensation provided should exceed the amount of the trade actually affected by the modification of the concession. The basis for the calculation of compensation should be the amount by which future trade prospects exceed the level of the quota. It is understood that the calculation of future trade prospects should be based on the greater of:
(a) the average annual trade in the most recent representative three-year period, increased by the average annual growth rate of imports in that same period, or by 10 per cent, whichever is the greater; or
(b) trade in the most recent year increased by 10 per cent.
In no case shall a Member’s liability for compensation exceed that which would be entailed by complete withdrawal of the concession.
7. Any Member having a principal supplying interest, whether as provided for in paragraph 1 above or in paragraph 1 of Article XXVIII, in a concession which is modified or withdrawn shall be accorded an initial negotiating right in the compensatory concessions, unless another form of compensation is agreed by the Members concerned.
1073. In EC — Poultry, Brazil claimed that the MFN principle in Articles I and XIII did not apply to tariff-rate quotas resulting from compensation negotiations under Article XXVIII of the GATT. The Panel rejected this argument and held:
“[I]f a preferential treatment of a particular trading partner not elsewhere justified is permitted under the pretext of ‘compensatory adjustment’ under Article XXVIII:2, it would create a serious loophole in the multilateral trading system. Such a result would fundamentally alter the overall balance of concessions Article XXVIII is designed to achieve.”(1488)
1074. The Panel concluded that a tariff-rate quota which resulted from negotiations under Article XXVIII of the GATT 1947, and which was incorporated into a Member’s Uruguay Round Schedule, must be administered in a non-discriminatory manner consistent with Article XIII of the GATT 1994.(1489) The Appellate Body agreed:
“We see nothing in Article XXVIII to suggest that compensation negotiated within its framework may be exempt from compliance with the non-discrimination principle inscribed in Articles I and XIII of the GATT 1994. As the Panel observed, this interpretation is, furthermore, supported by the negotiating history of Article XXVIII. Regarding the provision which eventually became Article XXVIII:3, the Chairman of the Tariff Agreements Committee at Geneva in 1947, concluded:
‘It was agreed that there was no intention to interfere in any way with the operation of the most-favoured-nation clause. This Article is headed ‘Modification of Schedules’. It refers throughout to concessions negotiated under paragraph 1 of Article II, the Schedules, and there is no reference to Article I, which is the Most-Favoured-Nation Clause. Therefore, I think the intent is clear: that in no way should this Article interfere with the operation of the Most-Favoured-Nation Clause.’(1490)
Although this statement refers specifically to the MFN clause in Article I of the GATT, logic requires that it applies equally to the non-discriminatory administration of quotas and tariff-rate quotas under Article XIII of the GATT 1994.”(1491)
1075. In Brazil — Poultry, the Panel observed regarding the possibility of negotiating discriminatory tariff rate quotas as compensation under Article XXVIII:
“ … In view of the EC’s obligations under Article XXVIII:2 to ‘maintain a general level of reciprocal and mutually advantageous concessions not less favourable to trade than that provided for’ in its previous tariff schedule, compensation for the withdrawal or modification of MFN commitments should be given in an MFN manner also. If a preferential treatment of a particular trading partner not elsewhere justified is permitted under the pretext of ‘compensatory adjustment’ under Article XXVIII:2, it would create a serious loophole in the multilateral trading system. Such a result would fundamentally alter the overall balance of concessions Article XXVIII is designed to achieve.”(1492)
1076. On 24 January 2000, the Council for Trade in Goods requested the Committee on Market Access to conduct the review envisaged in paragraph 1 of the Understanding on the Interpretation of Article XXVIII of the GATT 1994.(1493) On 12 October 2000, the Committee on Market Access agreed to report to the Council for Trade in Goods that the review had been carried out as mandated by that body and that, at that stage, there was no basis to change the criterion contained in paragraph 1 of the aforementioned Understanding, with a reservation that in the future any Member would be free to raise this matter when necessary.(1494)
1077. Regarding the history of tariff renegotiations under the GATT 1947. Although the early practice makes it difficult to determine the exact number of renegotiations that took place under the GATT 1947, the Secretariat’s records show that at least 42 GATT contracting parties initiated roughly 300 renegotiations between 1951 and 1994.(1495)
1078. The Procedures for Negotiations under Article XXVIII, adopted by the GATT 1947 Council on 10 November 1980,(1496) govern renegotiation of concessions under the WTO. These procedures provide for a Member undertaking GATT Article XXVIII negotiations to submit to the Secretariat: (i) a report and a joint letter upon completion of each bilateral negotiation and (ii) a final report upon completion of all its bilateral negotiations.
1079. According to a Secretariat Note on the Situation of Schedules of WTO Members, in practice, only 19 final reports were received by the Secretariat for the 79 renegotiations initiated between 1981 and 1994. The status recorded by the Secretariat for renegotiations lacking a final report is diverse — in a few cases the invocation of Article XXVIII was withdrawn, in others the renegotiating party submitted partial information on bilateral agreements reached, and in many cases, the Secretariat received no further information after initiation of the renegotiation. Only a few GATT 1947 renegotiations under Article XXVIII were formally carried over into the WTO. It remains unclear for the majority of these GATT 1947 renegotiations whether they were: (i) concluded with the relevant contracting parties and their results incorporated into a Schedule annexed to the Marrakesh Protocol to the GATT 1994, (ii) concluded, with the results overridden by the Schedule annexed to the Marrakesh Protocol, (iii) concluded with all the relevant contracting parties, but never reported or included in a Schedule, or (iv) never concluded and still ongoing.
1080. As of May 2011, there had been 35 requests to enter into renegotiations under GATT Article XXVIII since 1 January 1995. Of these, 4 had been withdrawn, 11 had been concluded and formally certified, 5 had been concluded, but not certified, and 15 were in principle ongoing.(1497)
1081. The Secretariat Note on the Situation of Schedules of WTO Members provides a table including information and document references regarding renegotiations under Article XXVIII since 1981 (including renegotiations held under Article XXVIII by virtue of Article XXIV:6).(1498)
1082. Regarding renegotiation of concessions consequent to implementation of the HS nomenclature in Schedules, or implementation of amendments to the HS nomenclature, see the discussion of the Harmonized System under Chapter II.
1083. On a series of occasions since 2004, the Council on Trade in Goods has agreed to extend the deadline for compensatory withdrawals under Article XXVIII:3 in respect of ongoing Article XXVIII renegotiations consequent to the 2004 enlargement of the EU. The action by the Goods Council has responded to a communication from the EU, requesting such an extension, and stating that the EU “will not assert that WTO Members who have submitted a claim pursuant to Article XXIV:6 of GATT 1994 are precluded from withdrawing substantially equivalent concessions under Article XXVIII:3 of GATT 1994 because this withdrawal occurs later than six months after the EU’s withdrawal of concessions, provided that the claiming WTO Member withdraws concessions no later than [six months after the expiry of the extension”. A similar series of extensions to the deadline under Article XXVIII:3 has been agreed in respect of negotiations consequent to the EU’s 2007 enlargement.(1499)
1084. A total of 32 Members (counting the EU as one Member), as well as the Netherlands on behalf of Aruba and the Netherlands Antilles, and Denmark on behalf of Greenland, submitted notifications under Article XXVIII:5 reserving the right to modify their schedules during the three-year period commencing 1 January 2009.
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XXXI. Article XXVIII bis
Article XXVIII bis: Tariff Negotiations
1. The contracting parties recognize that customs duties often constitute serious obstacles to trade; thus negotiations on a reciprocal and mutually advantageous basis, directed to the substantial reduction of the general level of tariffs and other charges on imports and exports and in particular to the reduction of such high tariffs as discourage the importation even of minimum quantities, and conducted with due regard to the objectives of this Agreement and the varying needs of individual contracting parties, are of great importance to the expansion of international trade. The CONTRACTING PARTIES may therefore sponsor such negotiations from time to time.
2. (a) Negotiations under this Article may be carried out on a selective product-by-product basis or by the application of such multilateral procedures as may be accepted by the contracting parties concerned. Such negotiations may be directed towards the reduction of duties, the binding of duties at then existing levels or undertakings that individual duties or the average duties on specified categories of products shall not exceed specified levels. The binding against increase of low duties or of duty-free treatment shall, in principle, be recognized as a concession equivalent in value to the reduction of high duties.
(b) The contracting parties recognize that in general the success of multilateral negotiations would depend on the participation of all contracting parties which conduct a substantial proportion of their external trade with one another.
3. Negotiations shall be conducted on a basis which affords adequate opportunity to take into account:
(a) the needs of individual contracting parties and individual industries;
(b) the needs of less-developed countries for a more flexible use of tariff protection to assist their economic development and the special needs of these countries to maintain tariffs for revenue purposes; and
(c) all other relevant circumstances, including the fiscal,* developmental, strategic and other needs of the contracting parties concerned.
Ad Article XXVIII bis: Paragraph 3
It is understood that the reference to fiscal needs would include the revenues aspect of duties and particularly duties imposed primarily for revenue purpose, or duties imposed on products which can be substituted for products subject to revenue duties to prevent the avoidance of such duties.
1086. Paragraph 16 of the Doha Declaration, adopted by Ministers on 14 November 2001, refers to Article XXVIII bis as follows:
We agree to negotiations which shall aim, by modalities to be agreed, to reduce or as appropriate eliminate tariffs, including the reduction or elimination of tariff peaks, high tariffs, and tariff escalation, as well as non-tariff barriers, in particular on products of export interest to developing countries. Product coverage shall be comprehensive and without a priori exclusions. The negotiations shall take fully into account the special needs and interests of developing and least-developed country participants, including through less than full reciprocity in reduction commitments, in accordance with the relevant provisions of Article XXVIII bis of GATT 1994 and the provisions cited in paragraph 50 below. To this end, the modalities to be agreed will include appropriate studies and capacity-building measures to assist least-developed countries to participate effectively in the negotiations.(1500)
Article XXIX: The Relation of this Agreement to the Havana Charter
1. The contracting parties undertake to observe to the fullest extent of their executive authority the general principles of Chapters I to VI inclusive and of Chapter IX of the Havana Charter pending their acceptance of it in accordance with their constitutional procedures.*
2. Part II of this Agreement shall be suspended on the day on which the Havana Charter enters into force.
3. If by September 30, 1949, the Havana Charter has not entered into force, the contracting parties shall meet before December 31, 1949, to agree whether this Agreement shall be amended, supplemented or maintained.
4. If at any time the Havana Charter should cease to be in force, the CONTRACTING PARTIES shall meet as soon as practicable thereafter to agree whether this Agreement shall be supplemented, amended or maintained. Pending such agreement, Part II of this Agreement shall again enter into force; Provided that the provisions of Part II other than Article XXIII shall be replaced, mutatis mutandis, in the form in which they then appeared in the Havana Charter; and Provided further that no contracting party shall be bound by any provisions which did not bind it at the time when the Havana Charter ceased to be in force.
5. If any contracting party has not accepted the Havana Charter by the date upon which it enters into force, the CONTRACTING PARTIES shall confer to agree whether, and if so in what way, this Agreement in so far as it affects relations between such contracting party and other contracting parties, shall be supplemented or amended. Pending such agreement the provisions of Part II of this Agreement shall, notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph 2 of this Article, continue to apply as between such contracting party and other contracting parties.
6. Contracting parties which are Members of the International Trade Organization shall not invoke the provisions of this Agreement so as to prevent the operation of any provision of the Havana Charter. The application of the principle underlying this paragraph to any contracting party which is not a Member of the International Trade Organization shall be the subject of an agreement pursuant to paragraph 5 of this Article.
Ad Article XXIX: Paragraph 1
Chapters VII and VIII of the Havana Charter have been excluded from paragraph 1 because they generally deal with the organization, functions and procedures of the International Trade Organization.
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XXXIII. Article XXX
Article XXX: Amendments
1. Except where provision for modification is made elsewhere in this Agreement, amendments to the provisions of Part I of this Agreement or the provisions of Article XXIX or of this Article shall become effective upon acceptance by all the contracting parties, and other amendments to this Agreement shall become effective, in respect of those contracting parties which accept them, upon acceptance by two-thirds of the contracting parties and thereafter for each other contracting party upon acceptance by it.
2. Any contracting party accepting an amendment to this Agreement shall deposit an instrument of acceptance with the Secretary-General of the United Nations within such period as the CONTRACTING PARTIES may specify. The CONTRACTING PARTIES may decide that any amendment made effective under this Article is of such a nature that any contracting party which has not accepted it within a period specified by the CONTRACTING PARTIES shall be free to withdraw from this Agreement, or to remain a contracting party with the consent of the CONTRACTING PARTIES.
1089. Concerning amendments to the WTO Agreement, see the material on WTO Article X in the Chapter on the WTO Agreement.
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XXXIV. Article XXXI
Article XXXI: Withdrawal
Without prejudice to the provisions of paragraph 12 of Article XVIII, of Article XXIII or of paragraph 2 of Article XXX, any contracting party may withdraw from this Agreement, or may separately withdraw on behalf of any of the separate customs territories for which it has international responsibility and which at the time possesses full autonomy in the conduct of its external commercial relations and of the other matters provided for in this Agreement. The withdrawal shall take effect upon the expiration of six months from the day on which written notice of withdrawal is received by the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
1090. Concerning withdrawal from the WTO, see the material on WTO Article XV in the Chapter on the WTO Agreement.
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XXXV. Article XXXII
Article XXXII: Contracting Parties
1. The contracting parties to this Agreement shall be understood to mean those governments which are applying the provisions of this Agreement under Articles XXVI or XXXIII or pursuant to the Protocol of Provisional Application.
2. At any time after the entry into force of this Agreement pursuant to paragraph 6 of Article XXVI, those contracting parties which have accepted this Agreement pursuant to paragraph 4 of Article XXVI may decide that any contracting party which has not so accepted it shall cease to be a contracting party.
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XXXVI. Article XXXIII
Article XXXIII: Accession
A government not party to this Agreement, or a government acting on behalf of a separate customs territory possessing full autonomy in the conduct of its external commercial relations and of the other matters provided for in this Agreement, may accede to this Agreement, on its own behalf or on behalf of that territory, on terms to be agreed between such government and the CONTRACTING PARTIES. Decisions of the CONTRACTING PARTIES under this paragraph shall be taken by a two-thirds majority.
1092. Regarding WTO accession, see the material on WTO Article XII in the Chapter on the WTO Agreement. Regarding GATT practice on accession.
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XXXVII. Article XXXIV
Article XXXIV: Annexes
The annexes to this Agreement are hereby made an integral part of this Agreement.
1093. Article XXXIV pertains to the Annexes to the GATT: Annexes A through F concerning the historical preferences dealt with by Article 1:2; Annex G relating to the application of the limits on historical preferences imposed by Article I:4; Annex H specifying shares of trade for the purposes of Article XXVI:6 on definitive entry into force of the GATT 1947; and Annex I, comprising the Notes and Supplementary Provisions to the GATT 1947 (“Ad Notes”) agreed as part of the 30 October 1947 text of the GATT 1947 and later amendments regarding practice under the GATT 1947 in respect of Article XXXIV. Concerning the “Ad Notes”, see the relevant sections of this Chapter.
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XXXVIII. Article XXXV
Article XXXV: Non-application of the Agreement between Particular Contracting Parties
1. This Agreement, or alternatively Article II of this Agreement, shall not apply as between any contracting party and any other contracting party if:
(a) the two contracting parties have not entered into tariff negotiations with each other, and
(b) either of the contracting parties, at the time either becomes a contracting party, does not consent to such application.
2. The CONTRACTING PARTIES may review the operation of this Article in particular cases at the request of any contracting party and make appropriate recommendations.
1095. Concerning non-application of the Multilateral Trade Agreements between particular Members, see Chapter on the WTO Agreement, under Article XIII.
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XXXIX. Article XXXVI
Article XXXVI: Principles and Objectives
(a) recalling that the basic objectives of this Agreement include the raising of standards of living and the progressive development of the economies of all contracting parties, and considering that the attainment of these objectives is particularly urgent for less-developed contracting parties;
(b) considering that export earnings of the less-developed contracting parties can play a vital part in their economic development and that the extent of this contribution depends on the prices paid by the less-developed contracting parties for essential imports, the volume of their exports, and the prices received for these exports;
(c) noting, that there is a wide gap between standards of living in less-developed countries and in other countries;
(d) recognizing that individual and joint action is essential to further the development of the economies of less-developed contracting parties and to bring about a rapid advance in the standards of living in these countries;
(e) recognizing that international trade as a means of achieving economic and social advancement should be governed by such rules and procedures — and measures in conformity with such rules and procedures — as are consistent with the objectives set forth in this Article;
agree as follows.
2. There is need for a rapid and sustained expansion of the export earnings of the less-developed contracting parties.
3. There is need for positive efforts designed to ensure that less-developed contracting parties secure a share in the growth in international trade commensurate with the needs of their economic development.
4. Given the continued dependence of many less-developed contracting parties on the exportation of a limited range of primary products,* there is need to provide in the largest possible measure more favourable and acceptable conditions of access to world markets for these products, and wherever appropriate to devise measures designed to stabilize and improve conditions of world markets in these products, including in particular measures designed to attain stable, equitable and remunerative prices, thus permitting an expansion of world trade and demand and a dynamic and steady growth of the real export earnings of these countries so as to provide them with expanding resources for their economic development.
5. The rapid expansion of the economies of the less-developed contracting parties will be facilitated by a diversification* of the structure of their economies and the avoidance of an excessive dependence on the export of primary products. There is, therefore, need for increased access in the largest possible measure to markets under favourable conditions for processed and manufactured products currently or potentially of particular export interest to less-developed contracting parties.
6. Because of the chronic deficiency in the export proceeds and other foreign exchange earnings of less-developed contracting parties, there are important interrelationships between trade and financial assistance to development. There is, therefore, need for close and continuing collaboration between the CONTRACTING PARTIES and the international lending agencies so that they can contribute most effectively to alleviating the burdens these less-developed contracting parties assume in the interest of their economic development.
7. There is need for appropriate collaboration between the CONTRACTING PARTIES, other intergovernmental bodies and the organs and agencies of the United Nations system, whose activities relate to the trade and economic development of less-developed countries.
8. The developed contracting parties do not expect reciprocity for commitments made by them in trade negotiations to reduce or remove tariffs and other barriers to the trade of less-developed contracting parties.*
9. The adoption of measures to give effect to these principles and objectives shall be a matter of conscious and purposeful effort on the part of the contracting parties both individually and jointly.
Ad Article XXXVI: Paragraph 1
This Article is based upon the objectives set forth in Article I as it will be amended by Section A of paragraph 1 of the Protocol Amending Part I and Articles XXIX and XXX when that Protocol enters into force.(1)
(footnote original) 1 This Protocol was abandoned on 1 January 1968.
The term “primary products” includes agricultural products, vide paragraph 2 of the note ad Article XVI, Section B.
A diversification programme would generally include the intensification of activities for the processing of primary products and the development of manufacturing industries, taking into account the situation of the particular contracting party and the world outlook for production and consumption of different commodities.
It is understood that the phrase “do not expect reciprocity” means, in accordance with the objectives set forth in this Article, that the less-developed contracting parties should not be expected, in the course of trade negotiations, to make contributions which are inconsistent with their individual development, financial and trade needs, taking into consideration past trade developments.
This paragraph would apply in the event of action under Section A of Article XVIII, Article XXVIII, Article XXVIII bis (Article XXIX after the amendment set forth in Section A of paragraph 1 of the Protocol Amending Part I and Articles XXIX and XXX shall have become effective(2)), Article XXXIII, or any other procedure under this Agreement.
(footnote original) 2 This Protocol was abandoned on 1 January 1968.
1096. Trade and development under the WTO Agreement, including special and differential treatment for developing country Members generally, is dealt with in the Chapter on the WTO Agreement. Where such treatment involves a derogation from MFN treatment under the GATT, see above under Article I.
1097. Pursuant to paragraph 42 of the Doha Declaration, the WTO Work Programme for the LDCs was adopted by the Sub-Committee on LDCs (hereinafter the Sub-Committee) on 12 February 2002.(1501) Since then, the Sub-Committee has mainly focussed on its implementation, and has considered the systemic issues forming part of it, in particular elements such as market access for LDCs, accession of LDCs to the WTO, technical assistance and capacity-building initiatives for LDCs. The Hong Kong Ministerial Declaration has mandated the continued implementation of this Work Programme.(1502) With respect to the mandate of the Doha Declaration and the negotiations on least-developed countries, see paragraphs 42–43 of the Doha Declaration in Section XXVII.A below.
1098. Market access is considered at every Sub-Committee meeting. To assist this work, the Secretariat has prepared notes on market access issues for products and services of export interest to LDCs, including information on LDCs’ export profile, their major products, major markets, tariff measures facing their products and measures taken by Members to improve LDCs’ market access.(1503)
1099. The Sub-Committee played an instrumental role in developing the Guidelines on LDC Accessions, which were adopted by the General Council in December 2002.(1504) The Secretariat has provided regular updates to the Sub-Committee on the state-of-play of LDC accessions.
1100. Trade-related technical assistance and capacity-building initiatives form a core element of the Work Programme. The Sub-Committee has considered WTO technical assistance and training in support of the LDCs as well as other capacity-building initiatives taken in favour of LDCs such as the Integrated Framework for LDCs (IF).(1505)
1101. The Committee on Trade and Development adopted Guidelines for WTO Technical Cooperation on 15 October 1996.(1506) On 13 December 1996, the Singapore Ministerial Conference adopted a Comprehensive and Integrated WTO Plan of Action for the Least-Developed Countries.(1507) The Plan of Action “offers a comprehensive approach and includes measures relating to the implementation of the Decision in Favour of Least-Developed Countries, as well as in the areas of capacity-building and market access from a WTO perspective.”(1508)
1102. The Integrated Framework (IF), a multi-donor programme to assist LDCs in playing a more active role in the global trading system, was initially established in October 1997, at the High-Level Meeting on Integrated Initiatives for Least-Developed Countries’ Trade Development convened by the WTO. The High-Level Meeting brought together the WTO, UNCTAD, the ITC, the IMF, UNDP and the World Bank, the six core agencies implementing the IF.(1509) At the High-Level Meeting, Members (i) endorsed the “Integrated Framework for Trade-Related Technical Assistance, including for Human and Institutional Capacity-Building, to Support Least-Developed Countries in Their Trade and Trade-Related Activities” (IF)(1510), (ii) recommended “all WTO Members to keep under active review all options for improving market access for least-developed countries presented in the Comprehensive and Integrated WTO Plan of Action for the Least-Developed Countries and to monitor the implementation of the commitments made in this regard”(1511), and (iii) “took note of the two reports and the recommendations” produced in the two roundtable discussions.(1512)
1103. The main objective of the IF was to improve the capacity of the LDCs to formulate, negotiate and implement trade policy so as to be able to fully integrate into the multilateral trading system and to take up the market opportunities this presents. In 2000 the Sub-Committee conducted a review of options for improving LDCs’ market access(1513), and the IF’s six core agencies also conducted a review of the IF, and decided to revamp it.(1514) To implement this decision, the Sub-Committee on Least-Developed Countries adopted the IF Proposal for a Pilot Scheme with two objectives: mainstreaming trade into LDCs’ national development strategies, and assisting in coordinated delivery of trade-related assistance to LDCs.(1515) Following a second evaluation of the IF, the IFSC approved a work programme for the IF in February 2004, extended in November 2005. Since then, the IFWG and IFSC have been implementing the work programme.(1516)
1104. In 2005, the WTO created a Task Force on an enhanced IF, in response to a call by the World Bank and the IMF. The December 2005 Hong Kong Ministerial Declaration welcomed this Task Force, and endorsed three elements of an enhanced IF: (i) increased, predictable, and additional funding to implement action matrices, (ii) strengthened in-country capacities to manage, implement and monitor the IF process, and (iii) improved IF governance. The Task Force’s work concluded with IFWG and IFSC adoption of its recommendations in July 2006.(1517)
1105. The Enhanced IF (EIF) is a multi-donor programme to support LDCs’ own efforts to mainstream trade into national development strategies; set up structures needed to coordinate delivery of trade-related technical assistance; and build capacity to trade, including addressing critical supply-side constraints. The EIF now assists LDCs worldwide, supported by the multi-donor EIF Trust Fund. It moves forward through the efforts of the EIF Executive Secretariat housed in the WTO; the EIF Board; the EIF Steering Committee; and the EIF Trust Fund Manager.(1518)
1106. The Hong Kong Ministerial Declaration also endorsed expansion of Aid for Trade.(1519) Three Global Reviews of Aid for Trade have been held in the Committee on Trade and Development. The Second Review established the Aid-for-Trade Work Programme 2010–2011, of which implementation is ongoing.(1520)
1107. The Singapore Plan of Action for the Least-Developed Countries also includes “provision for taking positive measures, for example duty-free access, on an autonomous basis, aimed at improving their overall capacity to respond to the opportunities offered by the trading system.”(1521) Paragraph 42 of the Doha Ministerial Declaration commits WTO Members “to the objective of duty-free, quota-free market access for products originating from LDCs” and “to consider additional measures for progressive improvements in market access for LDCs.”(1522) The Decision on Implementation-related Issues and Concerns, combined with paragraph 12 of the Doha Declaration aimed to provide a two-track solution to the issue faced by developing countries of implementing the WTO agreements.(1523)
1108. In paragraph 35 of the Doha Ministerial Declaration(1524), Ministers established a work programme under the auspices of the General Council to examine issues relating to the trade of small economies with the objective of framing responses to the trade-related issues identified for the fuller integration of small, vulnerable economies into the multilateral trading system, without creating a sub-category of WTO Members. On 1 March 2002, the General Council took note of a framework and procedures for the conduct of the Work Programme on Small Economies(1525) and instructed the Committee on Trade and Development (CTD) to conduct this programme of work in Dedicated Sessions and to report regularly on the progress of its work to the General Council.
1109. On 10 October 2006, the General Council agreed to the recommendations in a report by the CTD on Measures to Assist Small Economies in Meeting their Obligations under the Agreements on SPS Measures, TBT and TRIPS(1526), including instance, allowing small economies to use regional bodies to assist them in implementation of SPS, TBT and TRIPS obligations (it being understood that individual Members remain legally responsible for their individual notifications and other obligations under these Agreements).
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XL. Article XXXVII
Article XXXVII: Commitments
1. The developed contracting parties shall to the fullest extent possible — that is, except when compelling reasons, which may include legal reasons, make it impossible — give effect to the following provisions:
(a) accord high priority to the reduction and elimination of barriers to products currently or potentially of particular export interest to less-developed contracting parties, including customs duties and other restrictions which differentiate unreasonably between such products in their primary and in their processed forms;*
(b) refrain from introducing, or increasing the incidence of, customs duties or non-tariff import barriers on products currently or potentially of particular export interest to less-developed contracting parties; and
(ii) in any adjustments of fiscal policy accord high priority to the reduction and elimination of fiscal measures, which would hamper, or which hamper, significantly the growth of consumption of primary products, in raw or processed form, wholly or mainly produced in the territories of less-developed contracting parties, and which are applied specifically to those products.
2. (a) Whenever it is considered that effect is not being given to any of the provisions of subparagraph (a), (b) or (c) of paragraph 1, the matter shall be reported to the CONTRACTING PARTIES either by the contracting party not so giving effect to the relevant provisions or by any other interested contracting party.
(b) (i) The CONTRACTING PARTIES shall, if requested so to do by any interested contracting party, and without prejudice to any bilateral consultations that may be undertaken, consult with the contracting party concerned and all interested contracting parties with respect to the matter with a view to reaching solutions satisfactory to all contracting parties concerned in order to further the objectives set forth in Article XXXVI. In the course of these consultations, the reasons given in cases where effect was not being given to the provisions of subparagraph (a), (b) or (c) of paragraph 1 shall be examined.
(ii) As the implementation of the provisions of subparagraph (a), (b) or (c) of paragraph 1 by individual contracting parties may in some cases be more readily achieved where action is taken jointly with other developed contracting parties, such consultation might, where appropriate, be directed towards this end.
(iii) The consultations by the CONTRACTING PARTIES might also, in appropriate cases, be directed towards agreement on joint action designed to further the objectives of this Agreement as envisaged in paragraph 1 of Article XXV.
3. The developed contracting parties shall:
(a) make every effort, in cases where a government directly or indirectly determines the resale price of products wholly or mainly produced in the territories of less-developed contracting parties, to maintain trade margins at equitable levels;
(b) give active consideration to the adoption of other measures* designed to provide greater scope for the development of imports from less-developed contracting parties and collaborate in appropriate international action to this end;
(c) have special regard to the trade interests of less-developed contracting parties when considering the application of other measures permitted under this Agreement to meet particular problems and explore all possibilities of constructive remedies before applying such measures where they would affect essential interests of those contracting parties.
4. Less-developed contracting parties agree to take appropriate action in implementation of the provisions of Part IV for the benefit of the trade of other less-developed contracting parties, in so far as such action is consistent with their individual present and future development, financial and trade needs taking into account past trade developments as well as the trade interests of less-developed contracting parties as a whole.
5. In the implementation of the commitments set forth in paragraphs 1 to 4 each contracting party shall afford to any other interested contracting party or contracting parties full and prompt opportunity for consultations under the normal procedures of this Agreement with respect to any matter or difficulty which may arise.
Ad Article XXXVII: Paragraph 1 (a)
This paragraph would apply in the event of negotiations for reduction or elimination of tariffs or other restrictive regulations of commerce under Articles XXVIII, XXVIII bis (XXIX after the amendment set forth in Section A of paragraph 1 of the Protocol Amending Part I and Articles XXIX and XXX shall have become effective(13)), and Article XXXIII, as well as in connection with other action to effect such reduction or elimination which contracting parties may be able to undertake.
Paragraph 3 (b)
The other measures referred to in this paragraph might include steps to promote domestic structural changes, to encourage the consumption of particular products, or to introduce measures of trade promotion.
1111. Trade and development under the WTO Agreement, including special and differential treatment for developing country Members generally, is dealt with in the Chapter on the WTO Agreement. Where such treatment involves a derogation from MFN treatment under the GATT, see above under Article I.
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XLI. Article XXXVIII
Article XXXVIII: Joint Action
1. The contracting parties shall collaborate jointly, within the framework of this Agreement and elsewhere, as appropriate, to further the objectives set forth in Article XXXVI.
2. In particular, the CONTRACTING PARTIES shall:
(a) where appropriate, take action, including action through international arrangements, to provide improved and acceptable conditions of access to world markets for primary products of particular interest to less-developed contracting parties and to devise measures designed to stabilize and improve conditions of world markets in these products including measures designed to attain stable, equitable and remunerative prices for exports of such products;
(b) seek appropriate collaboration in matters of trade and development policy with the United Nations and its organs and agencies, including any institutions that may be created on the basis of recommendations by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development;
(c) collaborate in analysing the development plans and policies of individual less-developed contracting parties and in examining trade and aid relationships with a view to devising concrete measures to promote the development of export potential and to facilitate access to export markets for the products of the industries thus developed and, in this connection, seek appropriate collaboration with governments and international organizations, and in particular with organizations having competence in relation to financial assistance for economic development, in systematic studies of trade and aid relationships in individual less-developed contracting parties aimed at obtaining a clear analysis of export potential, market prospects and any further action that may be required;
(d) keep under continuous review the development of world trade with special reference to the rate of growth of the trade of less-developed contracting parties and make such recommendations to contracting parties as may, in the circumstances, be deemed appropriate;
(e) collaborate in seeking feasible methods to expand trade for the purpose of economic development, through international harmonization and adjustment of national policies and regulations, through technical and commercial standards affecting production, transportation and marketing, and through export promotion by the establishment of facilities for the increased flow of trade information and the development of market research; and
(f) establish such institutional arrangements as may be necessary to further the objectives set forth in Article XXXVI and to give effect to the provision of this Part.
1113. Trade and development under the WTO Agreement, including special and differential treatment for developing country Members generally, is dealt with in the Chapter on the WTO Agreement. Where such treatment involves a derogation from MFN treatment under the GATT, see above under Article I.
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XLII. Table of Regional Trade Agreements Notified to the GATT/WTO and in Force, as of 30 September 2011
(in alphabetical order by the RTA name)
|RTA Name||Date of notification||Date of entry into force||Notified under|
|Andean Community (CAN)||01-Oct-90||25-May-88||Enabling Clause|
|Armenia — Kazakhstan||17-Jun-04||25-Dec-01||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Armenia — Moldova||17-Jun-04||21-Dec-95||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Armenia — Russian Federation||17-Jun-04||25-Mar-93||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Armenia — Turkmenistan||17-Jun-04||07-Jul-96||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Armenia — Ukraine||17-Jun-04||18-Dec-96||GATT Art. XXIV|
|ASEAN — Australia — New Zealand||08-Apr-10||01-Jan-10||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|ASEAN — China||
|Enabling Clause & GATS Art. V|
|ASEAN — India||19-Aug-10||01-Jan-10||Enabling Clause|
|ASEAN — Japan||23-Nov-09||01-Dec-08||GATT Art. XXIV|
|ASEAN — Korea, Republic of||2010||
Enabling Clause & GATT Art.
XXIV & GATS Art. V
|ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA)||30-Oct-92||28-Jan-92||Enabling Clause|
|Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA)||02-Nov-76||17-Jun-76||Enabling Clause|
|Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA) — Accession of China||30-Apr-04||01-Jan-02||Enabling Clause|
|Australia — Chile||03-Mar-09||06-Mar-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Australia — New Zealand (ANZCERTA)||
|GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Australia — Papua New Guinea (PATCRA)||20-Dec-76||01-Feb-77||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Brunei Darussalam — Japan||31-Jul-08||31-Jul-08||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Canada — Chile||30-Jul-97||05-Jul-97||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Canada — Costa Rica||13-Jan-03||01-Nov-02||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Canada — Israel||15-Jan-97||01-Jan-97||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Canada — Peru||31-Jul-09||01-Aug-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM)||
|GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Central American Common Market (CACM)||24-Feb-61||04-Jun-61||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA) 2006||26-Jul-07||01-May-07||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Chile — China||
|GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Chile — Colombia||14-Aug-09||08-May-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Chile — Costa Rica||16-Apr-02||15-Feb-02||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
(Chile — Central America)
Chile — El Salvador
|29-Jan-04(G)||01-Jun-02||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
(Chile — Central America)
Chile — India
|Chile — Japan||24-Aug-07||03-Sep-07||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Chile — Mexico||27-Feb-01||01-Aug-99||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|China — Hong Kong, China||27-Dec-03||01-Jan-04||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|China — Macao, China||27-Dec-03||01-Jan-04||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|China — New Zealand||21-Apr-09||01-Oct-08||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|China — Singapore||02-Mar-09||01-Jan-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Colombia — Mexico||13-Sep-10||01-Jan-95||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Common Economic Zone (CEZ)||18-Aug-08||20-May-04||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA)||04-May-95||08-Dec-94||Enabling Clause|
|Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS)||29-Jun-99||30-Dec-94||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Costa Rica — Mexico||17-Jul-06||01-Jan-95||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
Dominican Republic — Central America — United
Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR)
|17-Mar-06||01-Mar-06||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|East African Community (EAC)||
|EC — Albania||07-Oct-09(S)||01-Apr-09(S)||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC — Algeria||24-Jul-06||01-Sep-05||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Andorra||23-Feb-98||01-Jul-91||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Bosnia and Herzegovina||11-Jul-08||01-Jul-08||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Cameroon||24-Sep-09||01-Oct-09||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — CARIFORUM States EPA||
|GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC — Chile||28-Oct-05(S)||01-Mar-05(S)||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC — Côte d’Ivoire||
|GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Croatia||12-Oct-09(S)||01-Feb-05(S)||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC — Egypt||03-Sep-04||01-Jun-04||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Faroe Islands||
|GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia||02-Oct-09(S)||01-Apr-04(S)||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC — Iceland||24-Nov-72||01-Apr-73||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Israel||20-Sep-00||01-Jun-00||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Jordan||17-Dec-02||01-May-02||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Lebanon||
|GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Mexico||
|GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC — Montenegro||18-Jun-10(S)||01-May-10(S)||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC — Morocco||13-Oct-00||01-Mar-00||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Norway||13-Jul-73||01-Jul-73||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Overseas Countries and Territories (OCT)||14-Dec-70||01-Jan-71||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Palestinian Authority||29-May-97||01-Jul-97||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — South Africa||02-Nov-00||01-Jan-00||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Switzerland — Liechtenstein||27-Oct-72||01-Jan-73||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Syria||15-Jul-77||01-Jul-77||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Tunisia||15-Jan-99||01-Mar-98||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC — Turkey||22-Dec-95||01-Jan-96||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC (10) Enlargement||24-Oct-79||01-Jan-81||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC (12) Enlargement||11-Dec-85 15-Dec-94(G)||01-Jan-86||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC (15) Enlargement||22-Dec-94(S)||01-Jan-95||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC (25) Enlargement||26-Apr-04 27-Sep-06(G)||01-May-04||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC (27) Enlargement||26-Jun-07(S)||01-Jan-07||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EC (9) Enlargement||07-Mar-72 24-Apr-57(G)||01-Jan-73||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EC Treaty||10-Nov-95(S)||01-Jan-58||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC)||21-Jul-99||24-Jun-99||Enabling Clause|
|Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)||06-Jul-05||24-Jul-93||Enabling Clause|
|Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO)||10-Jul-92||17-Feb-92||Enabling Clause|
|EFTA — Albania||07-Feb-11||01-Nov-10||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Canada||04-Aug-09||01-Jul-09||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Chile||03-Dec-04||01-Dec-04||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EFTA — Colombia||14-Sep-11||01-Jul-11||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EFTA — Croatia||14-Jan-02||01-Jan-02||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Egypt||17-Jul-07||01-Aug-07||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia||11-Dec-00||01-Jan-01||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Israel||30-Nov-92||01-Jan-93||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Jordan||17-Jan-02||01-Jan-02||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Korea, Republic of||23-Aug-06||01-Sep-06||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EFTA — Lebanon||22-Dec-06||01-Jan-07||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Mexico||25-Jul-01||01-Jul-01||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EFTA — Morocco||20-Jan-00||01-Dec-99||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Palestinian Authority||23-Jul-99||01-Jul-99||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Peru||30-Jun-11||01-Jul-11||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — SACU||29-Oct-08||01-May-08||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Serbia||24-Nov-10||01-Oct-10||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Singapore||14-Jan-03||01-Jan-03||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EFTA — Tunisia||03-Jun-05||01-Jun-05||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA — Turkey||06-Mar-92||01-Apr-92||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EFTA accession of Iceland||30-Jan-70||01-Mar-70||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Egypt — Turkey||05-Oct-07||01-Mar-07||Enabling Clause|
|EU — Korea, Republic of||07-Jul-11||01-Jul-11||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|EU — San Marino||24-Feb-10||01-Apr-02||GATT Art. XXIV|
|EU — Serbia||31-May-10||01-Feb-10||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Eurasian Economic Community (EAEC)||21-Apr-99||08-Oct-97||GATT Art. XXIV|
|European Economic Area (EEA)||
|GATS Art. V|
|European Free Trade Association (EFTA)||15-Jul-02(S)||01-Jun-02(S)||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Faroe Islands — Norway||12-Feb-96||01-Jul-93||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Faroe Islands — Switzerland||12-Feb-96||01-Mar-95||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Georgia — Armenia||08-Feb-01||11-Nov-98||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Georgia — Azerbaijan||08-Feb-01||10-Jul-96||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Georgia — Kazakhstan||08-Feb-01||16-Jul-99||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Georgia — Russian Federation||08-Feb-01||10-May-94||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Georgia — Turkmenistan||08-Feb-01||01-Jan-00||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Georgia — Ukraine||08-Feb-01||04-Jun-96||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Global System of Trade Preferences among Developing Countries (GSTP)||25-Sep-89||19-Apr-89||Enabling Clause|
|Guatemala — the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu||11-Jul-11||01-Jul-06||
GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V
Enabling Clause & GATT Art.
|Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)||2007 / 2009||01-Jan-03||XXIV|
|Honduras — El Salvador and the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu||06-Apr-10||01-Mar-08||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Hong Kong, China — New Zealand||03-Jan-11||01-Jan-11||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Iceland — Faroe Islands||10-Jul-08||01-Nov-06||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|India — Afghanistan||08-Mar-10||13-May-03||Enabling Clause|
|India — Bhutan||30-Jun-08||29-Jul-06||Enabling Clause|
|India — Japan||14-Sep-11||01-Aug-11||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|India — Malaysia||06-Sep-11||01-Jul-11||Enabling Clause & GATS Art. V|
|India — Nepal||02-Aug-10||27-Oct-09||Enabling Clause|
|India — Singapore||03-May-07||01-Aug-05||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|India — Sri Lanka||17-Jun-02||15-Dec-01||Enabling Clause|
|Israel — Mexico||22-Feb-01||01-Jul-00||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Japan — Indonesia||27-Jun-08||01-Jul-08||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Japan — Malaysia||12-Jul-06||13-Jul-06||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Japan — Mexico||31-Mar-05||01-Apr-05||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Japan — Philippines||11-Dec-08||11-Dec-08||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Japan — Singapore||08-Nov-02||30-Nov-02||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Japan — Switzerland||01-Sep-09||01-Sep-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Japan — Thailand||25-Oct-07||01-Nov-07||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Japan — Viet Nam||01-Oct-09||01-Oct-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Jordan — Singapore||07-Jul-06||22-Aug-05||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Korea, Republic of — Chile||08-Apr-04||01-Apr-04||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V Enabling Clause & GATT Art.|
|Korea, Republic of — India||2010||01-Jan-10||XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Korea, Republic of — Singapore||21-Feb-06||02-Mar-06||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Kyrgyz Republic — Armenia||12-Dec-00||27-Oct-95||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Kyrgyz Republic — Kazakhstan||29-Jun-99||11-Nov-95||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Kyrgyz Republic — Moldova||15-Jun-99||21-Nov-96||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Kyrgyz Republic — Russian Federation||15-Jun-99||24-Apr-93||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Kyrgyz Republic — Ukraine||15-Jun-99||19-Jan-98||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Kyrgyz Republic — Uzbekistan||15-Jun-99||20-Mar-98||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Lao People’s Democratic Republic — Thailand||26-Nov-91||20-Jun-91||Enabling Clause|
|Latin American Integration Association (LAIA)||01-Jul-82||18-Mar-81||Enabling Clause|
|Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG)||03-Aug-99||01-Jan-94||Enabling Clause|
|MERCOSUR — India||23-Feb-10||01-Jun-09||Enabling Clause|
Mexico — El Salvador
(Mexico — Northern Triangle)
|23-May-06||15-Mar-01||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
Mexico — Guatemala
(Mexico — Northern Triangle)
|03-Jul-06||15-Mar-01||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
Mexico — Honduras
(Mexico — Northern Triangle)
|01-Jun-01||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Mexico — Nicaragua||17-Oct-05||01-Jul-98||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|New Zealand — Singapore||04-Sep-01||01-Jan-01||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Nicaragua and the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu||09-Jul-09 29-Jan-93(G)||01-Jan-08||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)||01-Mar-95(S)||01-Jan-94||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Pacific Island Countries Trade Agreement (PICTA)||
|Pakistan — China||20-May-10(S)||10-Oct-09(S)||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Pakistan — Malaysia||19-Feb-08||01-Jan-08||Enabling Clause & GATS Art. V|
|Pakistan — Sri Lanka||11-Jun-08||12-Jun-05||Enabling Clause|
|Panama — Chile||17-Apr-08||07-Mar-08||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
Panama — Costa Rica
(Panama — Central America)
|07-Apr-09||23-Nov-08||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
Panama — El Salvador
(Panama — Central America)
|24-Feb-05||11-Apr-03||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
Panama — Honduras
(Panama — Central America )
|16-Dec-09||09-Jan-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Panama — Singapore||04-Apr-07||24-Jul-06||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Panama and the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu||28-Jul-09||01-Jan-04||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Pan-Arab Free Trade Area (PAFTA)||03-Oct-06||01-Jan-98||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Peru — China||03-Mar-10||01-Mar-10||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Peru — Korea, Republic of||09-Aug-11||01-Aug-11||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Peru — Singapore||30-Jul-09||01-Aug-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Protocol on Trade Negotiations (PTN)||09-Nov-71||11-Feb-73||Enabling Clause|
|Singapore — Australia||25-Sep-03||28-Jul-03||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|South Asian Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA)||21-Apr-08||01-Jan-06||Enabling Clause|
|South Asian Preferential Trade Arrangement (SAPTA)||21-Apr-97||07-Dec-95||Enabling Clause|
|South Pacific Regional Trade and Economic Cooperation Agreement (SPARTECA)||07-Jan-81||01-Jan-81||Enabling Clause|
|Southern African Customs Union (SACU)||25-Jun-07||15-Jul-04||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Southern African Development Community (SADC)||
|GATT Art. XXIV|
|Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR)||05-Dec-06(S)||07-Dec-05(S)||Enabling Clause & GATS Art. V|
|Thailand — Australia||27-Dec-04||01-Jan-05||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Thailand — New Zealand||01-Dec-05||01-Jul-05||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership||18-May-07||28-May-06||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|Turkey — Albania||09-May-08||01-May-08||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Bosnia and Herzegovina||29-Aug-03||01-Jul-03||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Chile||25-Feb-11||01-Mar-11||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Croatia||02-Sep-03||01-Jul-03||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia||05-Jan-01||01-Sep-00||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Georgia||18-Feb-09||01-Nov-08||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Israel||16-Apr-98||01-May-97||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Jordan||07-Mar-11||01-Mar-11||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Montenegro||12-Mar-10||01-Mar-10||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Morocco||10-Feb-06||01-Jan-06||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Palestinian Authority||01-Sep-05||01-Jun-05||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Serbia||10-Aug-10||01-Sep-10||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Syria||15-Feb-07||01-Jan-07||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Turkey — Tunisia||01-Sep-05||01-Jul-05||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Ukraine — Azerbaijan||18-Aug-08||02-Sep-96||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Ukraine — Belarus||18-Aug-08||11-Nov-06||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Ukraine — Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia||18-Aug-08||05-Jul-01||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Ukraine — Kazakhstan||18-Aug-08||19-Oct-98||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Ukraine — Moldova||18-Aug-08||19-May-05||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Ukraine — Russian Federation||18-Aug-08||21-Feb-94||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Ukraine — Tajikistan||18-Aug-08||11-Jul-02||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Ukraine — Turkmenistan||18-Aug-08||04-Nov-95||GATT Art. XXIV|
|Ukraine — Uzbekistan||18-Aug-08||01-Jan-96||GATT Art. XXIV|
|US — Australia||22-Dec-04||01-Jan-05||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|US — Bahrain||08-Sep-06||01-Aug-06||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|US — Chile||16-Dec-03||01-Jan-04||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|US — Israel||13-Sep-85||19-Aug-85||GATT Art. XXIV|
|US — Jordan||15-Jan-02||17-Dec-01||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|US — Morocco||30-Dec-05||01-Jan-06||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|US — Oman||30-Jan-09||01-Jan-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|US — Peru||03-Feb-09||01-Feb-09||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|US — Singapore||17-Dec-03||01-Jan-04||GATT Art. XXIV & GATS Art. V|
|West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU)||27-Oct-99||01-Jan-00||Enabling Clause|