Discussion forum: World Trade Report 2012
Trade and public policies: A closer look at non-tariff measures in the 21st century

The aim of this discussion forum is to encourage debate on the topic of the 2012 World Trade Report: Looking beyond international cooperation on tariffs. You are invited to submit short articles (of no more than 1,000 words) on this topic and to submit your views on the articles submitted by others.


This forum seeks to promote an informed debate on the topic of the World Trade Report 2012. Documents posted on the forum are the sole responsibility of their authors. They have no legal effect on the rights and obligations of WTO members, nor do they imply any judgement on the part of the WTO Secretariat regarding the consistency of any policy with the provisions of the WTO agreements.

See also:
> World Trade Report 2011
> Discussion forum: World Trade Report 2011

Non-tariff measures (i.e. policy measures, other than tariffs, that can potentially affect trade in goods) and services regulations are less transparent than tariffs. Some of them are in place for legitimate reasons (i.e. to allow countries to pursue legitimate policy goals). Others are mainly used to protect domestic producers. Most non-tariff measures (NTMs) affect the fixed costs for exporters of entering foreign markets, rather than their variable costs of servicing these markets. Addressing obstacles raised by regulations may involve some form of regulatory convergence and may require a multi-layered governance structure. For these reasons, NTMs and services regulations raise particular challenges for international co-operation on trade. Understanding these challenges is crucial to determining what the WTO’s future agenda on such measures should be.


Submission of articles
Please send your articles to [email protected]


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Recently submitted articles 

27/03/2012 Trade, FDI, Growth and Biodiversity: an empirical analysis for the main OECD countries.
by Roberta de Santis — LUISS University, Rome
15/03/2012 African Countries and the New Generation of Non-Tariff Barriers: “Standard-takers”, “Standard-Compliers” and “Standard-Victims”
by Henri J. Nkuepo, Research Scholar, Law School — University of Iowa (USA), Associate Fellow, CISDL — McGill University (Canada)
15/02/2012 Using Supply Chain Analysis to Examine the Costs of Non-Tariff Measures (NTMs) and the Benefits of Trade Facilitation
by Michael J. Ferrantino — U.S. International Trade Commission
19/01/2012 Trade Costs and Regulation in Services Sectors
by Sébastien Miroudot, Jehan Sauvage, and Ben Shepherd
16/12/2011 Private standards as NTBs: the case of carbon labels
by Shane Baddely and Robert Wolfe
18/11/2011 What will the World Trade Report 2012 be about?
by Marc Bacchetta and Cosimo Beverelli, WTO Secretariat
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