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The intent of this dictionary was to produce a broad listing of terms, which are commonly used in trade negotiations and especially within the context of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) with a view to providing an information tool for the public at large. The dictionary is presented in the four official languages of the FTAA: English, Spanish, Portuguese and French.

The compilation does not attempt to present the entire universe of terms used nor does it seek to prejudge or to affect in any way definitions or approaches currently proposed by any country in any trade negotiation. In fact, many of the definitions included in the publicly-available Draft FTAA Agreement which are still the subject of difficult debates have been excluded from this dictionary. The definitions are based on widely available source material including other trade agreements.

An alphabetical listing of the terms is included to facilitate the use of the dictionary. The terms and their definitions are presented by general negotiating theme found in the FTAA and in other trade negotiations.

An electronic version of this document can be found on the following websites: IADB, OAS,  and ECLAC.




Accumulation The cumulative assessment of the volume and price effects of imports of the subject merchandise from all countries with respect to which antidumping or countervailing duty petitions were filed if such imports compete with each other and with domestic like products in the export market. See Origin Regime, page 35, where this text may have a slightly different meaning.
Administrative file Complete record of administrative procedures.
Amount of subsidy Amount of financial contribution; transfer of funds; or other from of income or price support paid for the manufacture, production, or export of an article.
Antidumping Agreement   Agreement Relating to the Implementation of Article VI of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994, in Annex 1 A to the WTO Agreement – WTO agreement resulting from the Uruguay Round that implements Article VI of GATT 1994.
Antidumping duty Duty applied to imports of a particular good from a specified country in order to eliminate the harm being caused by the dumping to the domestic industry of the importing country. Article VI of the GATT 1994 permits the imposition of antidumping duties against dumped goods, equal to the difference between their export price and their normal value, if dumping causes injury to producers of competing
Business Proprietary Information Information of commercial value, the disclosure of which is likely to have the effect of either impairing the investigator’s ability to obtain such information as is necessary to perform its functions, or causing substantial harm to the competitive position of the products in the importing country.
Causal link Relationship or connection between a cause and an effect. A domestic industry petitioning for an antidumping investigation must provide evidence of a causal link between the dumped imports and the alleged injury. See Safeguards, page 36, where this text may have a slightly different meaning.
Circumvention Measures taken by exporters to evade antidumping or countervailing duties.
Countervailing duty   A special duty levied for the purpose of offsetting any bounty or subsidy bestowed, directly, or indirectly, upon the manufacture, production or export of any merchandise. No WTO member may levy any countervailing duty on the importation of any product of the territory of another unless it determines that the effect of the subsidization is such as to cause or threaten material injury to an established domestic industry, or is such as to retard materially the establishment of a domestic industry.
Countervailing measures Action taken by the importing country, usually in the form of increased duties to offset subsidies given to producers or exporters in the exporting country. Additional duties imposed by the importing country to offset government subsidies in the exporting country when the subsidized imports cause material injury to domestic industry in the importing country.
De minimis (Latin meaning “of the least”). The margin of dumping is considered de minimis, or the volume of dumped imports, actual or potential, or the injury, is considered negligible, if this margin is less than 2 per cent, expressed as a percentage of the export price. The investigation is then terminated. Moreover, the volume of dumped imports shall normally be regarded as negligible if the volume of dumped imports from a particular country is found to account for less than 3 per cent of imports of the like product in the importing Member, unless countries which individually account for less than 3 percent of the imports of the like product in the importing Member collectively account for more than 7 per cent of imports of the like product in the importing Member.
Definitive duty The final legal assessment or collection of a duty or tax where the facts as finally established show that there is dumping and injury caused thereby.
Domestic industry Domestic producers as a whole of the like products or to those of them whose collective output of the products constitutes a major proportion of the total domestic production of those products.
Domestic subsidy Any act, practice, or measure other than an export subsidy by which a government confers a benefit upon a product and/or enterprise. See “subsidy”, page 42.
Dumping Introduction of a product into the commerce of another country at less than its normal value, if the export price of the product exported from one country to another is less than the comparable price, in the ordinary course of trade, for the like product when destined for consumption in the exporting country. Selling merchandise in another country at a price below the price at which the same merchandise is sold in the home market or selling such merchandise below the costs incurred in production and shipment Dumping occurs when goods are exported at a price less than their normal value, generally meaning they are exported for less than they are sold in the domestic market or third-country markets, or at less than production cost.
Duty deposit This refers to antidumping duties which must be deposited upon entry of merchandise which is the subject of an antidumping duty order for each manufacturer, producer or exporter equal to the amount by which the foreign market value exceeds the price of the merchandise in the domestic market.
Essential facts Crucial facts considered and used for the decision to apply, or not, an antidumping measure.
Export subsidy A subsidy such as those described in the Illustrative List of Export Subsidies of the WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures. See “subsidy”, page 42.
Final determination Final decision on an antidumping or subsidy investigation.
In situ investigation On-site investigation.
Initiation of an investigation Procedural action by which a WTO member formally commences an antidumping investigation to determine the existence, degree and effect of any alleged dumping.
Injury Occurs when the effect of the dumping or subsidization, as the case may be, is such as to cause or threaten material injury to an established domestic industry, or is such as to retard materially the establishment of a domestic industry.
Investigating authority Body in charge of carrying out an antidumping or subsidy investigation.
Investigation Procedure to determine the existence, degree, and effects of dumping or subsidies.
Lesser duty A duty which is less than the margin of dumping but adequate to remove the injury to the domestic industry.
Like product A product which is identical, i.e. alike in all respects to the product under consideration, or in the absence of such a product, another product which, although not alike in all respects, has characteristics closely resembling those of the product under consideration.
Margin of dumping The difference between the comparable price of the like product when exported to an appropriate third country and the cost of production in the country of origin plus a reasonable amount for administrative, selling and general costs and for profits.
Normal course of trade Sales made in the course of normal operations.
Normal value The price at which merchandise is sold or offered for sale in the principal markets of the country from which it is exported.
Preliminary investigation Initial procedure to determine the existence, degree, and effects of dumping or subsidization.
Price undertaking Undertaking by an exporter to raise the export price of the product to avoid the possibility of an antidumping duty.
Prospective Effective or operative in the future.
Provisional duty Provisionally applied as opposed to definitive duty.
Public interest The general welfare of the public that warrants recognition and protection.
Constructed/ Reconstructed value A means of determining fair or foreign market value when sales of such or similar merchandise do not exist or, for various reasons, cannot be used for comparison purposes. The “constructed value” consists of the cost of materials and fabrication or other processing employed in producing the merchandise, general expenses of not less than 10 percent of material and fabrication costs, and profit of not less than 8 percent of the sum of the production costs and general expenses. To this amount is added the cost of packing for exportation to the export market.
Relevant market The relevant market is determined on the basis of first establishing the relevant product  market and geographic market. The relevant product market comprises all the products and/or services that the consumer and/or user consider to be interchangeable or substitutable by reason of their characteristics, price or intended use. The relevant geographic market comprises all areas in which competitors in the relevant product market compete with each other in the sale or purchase of products under equal competition conditions. Geographic areas in which the competition conditions are significantly different are not taken into account in determining the relevant geographic market. See Competition Policy, page 22, where this text may have a slightly different meaning.
Retrospective Taking effect from a date in the past.
Review determination Review of rights and obligations that might be initiated by the investigating authority.
Subsidy An export subsidy is a benefit conferred on a firm by the government that is contingent on exports. A domestic subsidy is a benefit not directly linked to exports.
Subsidies Agreement Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures in Annex 1 a to the WTO Agreement (also known as SCM Agreement) - The Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures is intended to build on the Agreement on Interpretation and Application of Articles VI, XVI and XXIII which was negotiated in the Tokyo Round.
Sunset review Procedure under which an antidumping or countervailing duty automatically terminates at the end of a fixed period unless it is formally renewed.
Verification schedule A timetable for the verification of documents by the investigative authority.
Weighted average The percentage determined by dividing the aggregate dumping margins determined for a specific exporter or producer by the aggregate export prices and constructed export prices of such exporter or producer.
Zeroing In a comparison of the weighted average normal value with the weighted average of prices of comparable export transactions for the product under an antidumping investigation, the practice of assigning a zero margin to a negative dumping margin (when the export price is above the normal price) found for any export transaction.