Market access for goods

Market access for goods in the WTO means the conditions, tariff and non-tariff measures, agreed by members for the entry of specific goods into their markets. Tariff commitments for goods are set out in each member's schedules of concessions on goods. The schedules represent commitments not to apply tariffs above the listed rates — these rates are “bound”. Non-tariff measures are dealt with under specific WTO agreements (see list below). WTO Members seek to continually improve market access through the regular WTO work programme and through negotiations such as those launched at the Doha Ministerial Conference in November 2001.

See also:
> Non-agricultural market access negotiations
> Negotiations, implementation and development: the Doha agenda
> Hong Kong Ministerial Declaration

Derestriction of bilateral negotiating material from earlier GATT Rounds of negotiations

In line with WTO's efforts to enhance transparency, Members have agreed to derestrict an important number of documents relating to earlier GATT Rounds of negotiations. 1

The derestricted material includes more than 5,000 records kept by the Secretariat, including bilateral requests, offers, and agreements negotiated using the “request and offer” approach.

The bilateral material has been scanned in a joint project with Stanford University Libraries to ensure its preservation.

1. For more background information on the subject please see minutes of the meetings of the Committee on Market Access (G/MA/M/52, G/MA/M/53, and G/MA/M/55) and the General Council Decision of 25 July 2013, “Derestriction of some GATT 1947 historical bilateral negotiating documentation” (WT/L/892).

> GATT bilateral negotiating material by Round

> GATT bilateral negotiating material by Contracting Party


back to top



back to top


Information on market access for goods in the WTO
Links to market access and tariff information in the WTO guide “Understanding the WTO”
Includes: TariffBindings; Agriculture;
(Click your browser’s “back” button to return to this page.)


back  to  top

The mandate   

Consult or download the Marrakesh Protocol


Summary of the legal texts of the GATT
A technical summary   

Browse or download the text of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT 1947) from the legal texts gateway
Find decisions of WTO bodies concerning the GATT in the Analytical Index — Guide to WTO Law and Practice

The Doha negotiating mandate
Section on market access in the 2001 Doha Ministerial Declaration

Consult the goods schedules for WTO members and new members
Hong Kong Ministerial Declaration



back  to  top

Committee on Market Access  

The CMA has a broad mandate, covering all market access issues that are not dealt by any other WTO body. It reports to the Council for Trade in Goods (CTG). The current chair is .

Full details