Non-tariff measures

What's New

  • Voluntary environmental and organic standards in agriculture

    While public regulation in food and agriculture is attracting attention at both policy and research level for their potential implications on international food trade, policy implications of agricultural standards – understood to be legally not mandatory and hence voluntary – are much less well understood.

    Read more
  • Database: Inventory of Restrictions on Exports of Raw Materials

    This OECD inventory reports export taxes, prohibitions, licensing requirements and other measures by which governments regulate the export of agricultural and industrial raw materials (minerals, metals and wood). Create your own customised tables and download the data.

    Read more
  • Mineral resource trade in Chile - lessons for economic development

    Instead of resorting to trade measures such as export restrictions, Chile manages its minerals sector through a combination of balanced taxation, stable investment measures, good management of tax revenue, exchange rate policy and initiatives aimed at producing a multiplier effect of economy-wide development, according to this study.

    Read more
Non-tariff measures are  measures other than normal tariffs which have the effect of restricting trade between nations. OECD analyses these measures to assist policy makers and governments in making sound trade policy decisions.

» Sign up for regular news and e-mail alerts from OECD Trade



Looking Beyond Tariffs

This publication analyses where and why certain non-tariff measures are being applied to traded goods that are covered by multilateral rules and disciplines, and how they continue to represent challenges for exporters and policy makers.

» Read it online

Mineral Resource Trade in Chile

This paper identifies some of the good practice areas in mining regulation in Chile whose economy has shown strong growth over most of the last two decades.

» Read it online

Export Restrictions on Raw Materials:
Experience with Alternative Policies in Botswana

This paper examines some of the policies in place in Botswana that have contributed to the governance and management of its substantial minerals sector.

» Read it online

» All OECD trade books
» All OECD trade policy papers


Key Areas in Non-Tariff Measures

Inventory of Restrictions on Exports of Raw Materials 
This Inventory contains information on export regulation in the raw materials sector, namely in agricultural products, minerals, metals and wood. It records measures known to restrain export activity at the 6-digit level of HS2007 classification. The default year is 2010, but the dataset contains both older and more recent data (1996-2012).

» Access the inventory database now

Export Restrictions on Raw Materials
Export restrictions have negative consequences for international trading partners and producer countries. By diverting raw materials from export to domestic markets, these restrictions raise prices for foreign consumers and importers. At the same time, by reducing domestic prices in the producer countries and increasing global uncertainty about future prices, export restrictions discourage investment in extracting and producing raw materials - potentially reducing the overall supply of materials in the long term. 

» Read more about export restrictions on raw materials

Trade Costs
International production, trade and investments are increasingly organised within so-called global value chains (GVCs) where the different stages of the production process are located across different countries. This emergence of GVCs challenges our conventional wisdom on how we look at economic globalisation and in particular, the policies that we develop around it. The OECD is preparing a broad range of work to help policy makers to understand the effects of GVCs on a number of policy domains.

» Learn more about the role of trade costs

Technical Barriers to Trade
Regional trade agreements (RTAs) cover more than half of international trade and operate alongside global multilateral agreements under the World Trade Organization (WTO). OECD analyses the services trade elements of regional trade agreements, examining how trade has been influenced and what further measures countries can take.

» Examine technical barriers to trade

Facilitating Trade through Regulatory Co-operation
International regulatory cooperation is one of the best practice regulatory principles that OECD is promoting to achieve better and more efficient regulation and thereby remove unnecessary obstacles to trade and increase economic welfare. The OECD Trade Committee’s contribution to the work on international regulatory co-operation aims to specifically strengthen governments’ capacities to evaluate the economic effects of different potential mechanisms of collaboration, from a conceptual perspective and through actual case work.

» Read more about trade and regulatory co-operation