Commentaries

Technical Barriers to Trade: Reducing trade friction from standards and regulations

“Technical Barriers to Trade: Reducing trade friction from standards and regulations” written by WTO is published in 2015.

Introduction

Standards and regulations are useful tools for the protection of health, safety and the environment. But they can be burdensome, technical and complex. And they tend to proliferate. So transparency is important. If a regulator deems it necessary to ban the use of a chemical in an imported toy (on health grounds), or require energy efficiency labels on imported appliances (on environmental grounds), the regulations must be clear, based on relevant international standards, and not discriminate – to name a few requirements.

Technical Barriers to Trade Committee

The Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee, consisting of all WTO members, is a unique multilateral forum for the discussion of standards and regulations affecting trade. Over the past 20 years, it has developed a three-pronged approach to its work:

1) notifications

2) trade concerns

3) trade cooperation.

This publication could be downloaded here

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