Areas of Policy Cooperation in past Free Trade Agreements and Economic Partnership Agreements

Areas of Policy Cooperation in past Free Trade Agreements and Economic Partnership Agreements

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The provisions included in free trade agreements (FTAs) vary across agreements. The World Bank has created a database that summarises the content of all FTAs that were in force and notified to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) as of 2015. It covers 279 FTAs. For each agreement, the commitments are classified in one of 52 categories (outlined in Table 1 below) and distinguished according to whether or not they are legally enforceable.

Some areas of policy cooperation are more commonly included in FTAs than others. The World Bank classifies 18 of the 52 areas of policy cooperation as “core” provisions. These are provisions which the World Bank identify as most meaningful from an economic point of view and have appeared most frequently in FTAs. “Non-core” provisions – which sometimes go beyond areas directly associated with trade and investment – have appeared less frequently in FTAs. As with all provisions, their inclusion typically depends upon the specific objectives of an agreement and the preferences of the partners involved.

Areas of policy cooperation in past Free Trade Agreements and Economic Partnership Agreements

“Core” provisions (as defined by World Bank)
· Tariffs on industrial goods
· Tariffs on agricultural goods
· Customs administration
· General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS)
· Export taxes
· Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS)
· State Trading Enterprises
· Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT)
· Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS)
· Countervailing measures
· Anti-dumping
· State Aid/Subsidies
· Public Procurement
· Trade Related Investment Measures (TRIMS)
· Intellectual Property Rights (IPR)
· Competition Policy
· Investment
· Movement of capital

“Non-core” provisions
· Anti-corruption
· Environmental laws
· Labour market regulation
· Consumer protection
· Data protection
· Agriculture
· Political dialogue
· SMEs
· Social Matters
· Visa & Asylum
· Approximation of legislation
· Audiovisual
· Civil protection
· Innovation policies
· Cultural cooperation
· Economic policy dialogue
· Public administration
· Statistics
· Education and training
· Energy
· Financial assistance
· Health
· Human Rights
· Illegal immigration
· Regional cooperation
· Taxation
· Illicit drugs
· Industrial cooperation
· Information society
· Mining
· Money laundering
· Nuclear safety
· Research and technology
· Terrorism

Source: World Bank “Content of Deep Trade Agreements Database”

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