The impact of preferential trade agreements depends on their design and implementation. Gains cannot be taken for granted. When such agreements are designed to stimulate trade and bring net economic benefits to partners, effective implementation must minimize the number of excluded products, apply nonrestrictive rules of origin and, most importantly, strive for low trade barriers for non-members. In addition, agreements often involve the removal of non-tariff barriers, the liberalization of trade-in services, investment and intellectual property provisions, and mechanisms for conflict resolution. In order to ensure that preferential trade agreements fulfill the expectations of the public and private sectors, the above provisions must be properly implemented.
Trade Faciliation Policy Note, 6 pp.