«From 1948 to 1994, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) set out rules for much of world trade and led to periods when international trade growth rates were highest. It seemed well established, but during those 47 years it was a preliminary agreement and an interim organization. The GATT came into force on January 1, 1948. From the beginning, it was refined, which eventually led to the creation, on 1 January 1995, of the World Trade Organization (WTO), which absorbed and expanded it. To date, 125 nations signed its agreements, which covered about 90% of world trade. That is, quantitative barriers to trade, such as trade controls and quotas. The agreement also provided for a system for resolving trade disputes between nations and the framework allowed for a series of multilateral negotiations on the removal of customs barriers. The GATT was considered a major success in the post-war years. The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), signed on 30 October 1947 by 23 countries, was a legal agreement to minimize barriers to international trade by eliminating or reducing quotas, tariffs and subsidies, while maintaining important rules. The GATT is expected to stimulate economic recovery after the Second World War through the reconstruction and liberalization of world trade. The GATT has introduced the principle of the most favoured nation into members` collective agreements.
«For nearly half a century, the fundamental legal principles of THE GATT have remained similar to those of 1948 (although) efforts to reduce tariffs have continued. Much of it has been achieved through a series of multilateral negotiations known as «trade cycles» – the most significant progress in international trade liberalization has been achieved through these GATT-led cycles. The eighth, the Uruguay-GATT business cycle of 1986-1994, was the last and largest of all. It led to the WTO and a series of new agreements. The Goods Council is responsible for the GATT and is made up of representatives from all WTO member countries. Swedish Ambassador Mikael Anzén has been President of the Council since October 2020. The Council has 10 committees on issues such as market access, agriculture, subsidies and anti-dumping measures. «Fifteen countries began discussions in December 1945 on reducing and committing tariffs. After the recent end of the Second World War, they wanted to give an early boost to trade liberalization and begin to correct the legacy of protectionist measures that have remained in place since the early 1930s. This first round of negotiations resulted in a set of trade rules and 45,000 tariff concessions for $10 billion, or about one-fifth of the world total. «The group was expanded to 23 until the signing of the agreement on October 30, 1947….
One of GATT`s most important achievements has been indiscriminate trade. Any GATT signatory should be treated like any other, known to be the nation`s most privileged principle and entered into the WTO. The practical result was that, once a country had negotiated a tariff reduction with some other countries (usually its major trading partners), this reduction would automatically apply to all GATT signatories. There were leakage clauses allowing countries to negotiate exemptions if their domestic producers were particularly harmed by tariff reductions. In 1964, the GATT began to work to curb the predatory pricing policy. These measures are classified as dumping. Later this year, countries will continue to address global issues, including the fight against agriculture and intellectual property protection work. Bagwell, Kyle. The Economics of the World Trading System. Cambridge, Mass. In: Mit Press. «The Havana conference began on November 21, 1947, less than a month after the gaTT was signed.