Topics handled by WTO committees and agreements
Issues covered by the WTO's committees and agreements


Visualized: approaches to tariff reduction formulas

These are simplified visualizations of the various approaches, presented here only symbolically to give an idea of the difference between the approaches. Each line represents a hypothetical cut from a single representative starting tariff. In reality there are a range of starting tariffs in each category, and for the Uruguay Round approach, a range for possible cuts for each (subject to an average and a minimum).

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This briefing document explains current agricultural issues raised before and in the current negotiations. It has been prepared by the Information and Media Relations Division of the WTO Secretariat to help public understanding about the agriculture negotiations. It is not an official record of the negotiations.

‘Banded approach’ (draft modalities, March 2003)  back to top

UR = Uruguay Round approach

Products categorized by height of starting tariff.
Higher bands: steeper cuts. In the March 2003 draft modalities, the formulas in each band use the Uruguay Round (UR) approach (average cuts subject to minimums).


‘Blended approach’ (Cancún draft frameworks)  back to top

UR = Uruguay Round approach
SWISS = Swiss formula
DUTY FREE = Duty free

Products categorized by sensitivity.
Used in the Cancún draft frameworks, the approach “blends” three formulas. An Uruguay Round approach applies to one category, a Swiss formula to another, and a third is duty-free.


‘Tiered approach’ (August 2004 agreed framework)  back to top

Products categorized by height of starting tariff.
Higher tiers (or bands): steeper cuts. Type of formula and number of tiers? In the August 2004 agreed framework this is still to be negotiated.


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