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DICTIONARY OF TRADE TERMS

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.


 


IADB
 


OAS
 

ECLAC


GENERAL TERMS
TERM DEFINITION
Americas Business Forum (ABF)
 
Parallel event organized by the business community at the time of the meeting of Ministers Responsible for Trade in the Hemisphere participating in the negotiations of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). http://www.abfmiami2003.com 
Americas Trade and Sustainable Development Forum Parallel event organized by civil society organizations at the time of the meeting of Ministers Responsible for Trade in the Hemisphere participating in the negotiations of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). http://www.miami.edu/nsc/pages/FTAA.html 
Andean Community (CAN) Formerly known as the Andean Group (established in 1969) and the Andean Common Market, the Andean Community (CAN) is a sub-regional organization made up of Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela and the bodies and institutions comprising the Andean Integration System (AIS). The key objectives of the Andean Community are: to promote the balanced and harmonious development of the member countries under equitable conditions; to stimulate growth through integration and economic and social cooperation; to enhance participation in the regional integration process with a view to the progressive formation of a Latin American common market; and to strive for a steady improvement in the standard of living of their inhabitants. http://www.comunidadandina.org 
Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Established in November 1989, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) is the premier forum for facilitating economic growth, cooperation, trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific region. APEC members (21) are: Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong, China, Indonesia, Japan, Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, the Russian Federation, Singapore, Chinese Taipei, Thailand, United States, and Viet Nam. http://www.apecsec.org.sg 
Business facilitation measures In the context of the FTAA, set of measures approved by Ministers Responsible for Trade at their Toronto Meeting, held on November 4, 1999. These include eight customs-related measures and ten transparency-related measures, which can be found in Annexes II and III of the Toronto Ministerial Declaration. http://www.ftaa-alca.org/ministerials/minis_e.asp 
Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM) CARICOM is a grouping of 15 member countries that was established by the Treaty of Chaguaramas in 1973 to promote economic integration through the free movement of goods and functional cooperation in areas such as education and health. The Treaty was revised in 2001 to elevate the common market into an economic union, the Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME), which envisions the free movement of goods, services, capital and labor, macroeconomic policy coordination and harmonization of laws and institutions. Member (15) countries are: Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago. The Bahamas is a member of the Community but not the Common Market. Associate members (3) include: Anguilla, British Virgin Islands, Turks and Caicos Islands. http://www.caricom.org 
Central American Common Market (CACM) The Central American Common Market (CACM) was established on 13 December 1960 when Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Nicaragua signed the General Treaty of Central American Economic Integration. Costa Rica acceded on 23 July 1962. In October 1993, the five CACM countries signed the Guatemala Protocol, which amended the 1960 General Treaty. The Protocol redefines the objectives, principles and stages of economic integration, and calls on members to establish a customs union. More specifically, the Guatemala Protocol calls on members to bring the free trade area of the CACM into full operation through the gradual elimination of tariff and non-tariff barriers, the granting of national treatment to intraregional trade, and the adoption of a regional legal framework covering rules of origin, safeguards, unfair trade practices, intellectual property, services, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, and standards and technical regulations. http://www.sieca.org.gt 
Common Market of the South (MERCOSUR) Established as the Common Market of the South (MERCOSUR) through the Treaty of Asuncion on 26 March 1991. Between 1991 and 1995, MERCOSUR members, Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, engaged in a series of negotiations to establish a common external tariff, which took effect on 1 January 1995. The deadline for full implementation of the customs union by all members in all sectors is 2006. The re-launching of MERCOSUR’s integration process in 2000 called for closer macroeconomic coordination and other areas of prioritization such as institutional strengthening, the common external tariff, dispute settlement, trade remedies and competition policy, and investment incentives. Chile and Bolivia became associate members, respectively, in 1996 and 1997. http://www.mercosul.org.uy 
European Union (EU) The European Union (EU) groups fifteen member states through a set of common institutions where decisions on specific matters of joint interest are taken at the European level. It was founded as the European Community after the Second World War to enhance political, economic and social co-operation among its members. The ‘single market’, adopted in 1992 through the Treaty of Maastricht, is the core of the present European Union. It includes the freedoms of movement for goods, services, people and capital and is underpinned by a range of supporting policies. A common currency, the ‘Euro’, which replaced the old national currencies in 12 EU countries, along with a European Central Bank, came into existence on 1 January 2002. Member states (15) include: Austria; Belgium; Denmark; Finland; France; Germany; Greece; Ireland; Italy; Luxembourg; Netherlands; Portugal; Spain; Sweden; United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Ten new member countries have been invited to join the EU on 1 May 2004, namely: Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia. http://europa.eu.int 
Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) The Heads of State and Government of the 34 democracies in the hemisphere agreed to construct a Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), in which barriers to trade and investment will be progressively eliminated. The negotiations were launched at the Summit of the Americas in Miami, U.S.A., in December 1994. They agreed to complete negotiations towards this agreement by January 2005. http://www.ftaa-alca.org 
FTAA website The official public website for the negotiating process of the Free Trade Area of the Americas. http://www.ftaa-alca.org 
General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), has been superseded as an international organization by the World Trade Organization. An updated General Agreement is now one of the WTO’s agreements. See “World Trade Organization”, page 16.
General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) The General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) is the first multilateral, legally binding set of rules covering international trade in services. The GATS came into effect in January 1995 as an integral part of the WTO. The workings of the GATS are the responsibility of the Council for Trade in Services, made up of representatives from all WTO members.
Hemispheric Cooperation Program (HCP) The Hemispheric Cooperation Program (HCP) aims to strengthen the capacities of those countries seeking assistance to participate in the FTAA negotiations, implement their trade commitments, and address the challenges and maximize the benefits of hemispheric integration, including productive capacity and competitiveness in the region. The Program includes a mechanism to assist these countries to develop national and/or sub-regional trade capacity building strategies that define, prioritize and articulate their needs and programs pursuant to those strategies, and to identify sources of financial and non-financial support for fulfilling these needs. The HCP was endorsed by the FTAA Ministers Responsible for Trade at their meeting in Quito, in November 2002. http://www.ftaa-alca.org/ministerials/quito/minist_e.asp 
Inter-American Development Bank (IDB or IADB) Established in 1959, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) supports economic and social development and regional integration in Latin America and the Caribbean. It does so mainly through lending to public institutions, but it also funds some private projects, typically in infrastructure and capital markets development. Members (46) include: Argentina, Austria, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Finland, France, Germany, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Nicaragua, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Trinidad and Tobago, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay and Venezuela. http://www.iadb.org 
Latin American Association for Integration (ALADI) The Latin American Association for Integration (ALADI) was established by the Treaty of Montevideo in August 1980 and became operational in March 1981. The Association seeks to foster economic cooperation among its members, including through the conclusion of regional trading agreements and sectoral agreements. Members (12) include: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela. ALADI replaced the Latin American Free Trade Association (LAFTA; Asociación Latinoamericana de Libre Comercio), which had been established in 1960 with the aim of developing a common market in Latin America. http://www.aladi.org 
Ministerial meeting The periodic meeting of the Ministers Responsible for Trade of the 34 participating countries in the Free Trade Area of the Americas negotiations.
National Strategies to Strengthen Trade Capacities In the context of the FTAA Hemispheric Cooperation Program, countries have developed national or regional strategies that define, prioritize, and articulate their needs related to strengthening their capacity for: preparing for negotiations; implementing trade commitments and adjusting to integration. In order to facilitate coordination and sharing of experiences, the strategies follow a common format that was developed by the Consultative Group on Smaller Economies, with the assistance of the Tripartite Committee.
Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) groups 30 member countries in a unique forum to discuss, develop and refine economic and social policies. Established December 1960 and came into being in September 1961. Members (30) include: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States. http://www.oecd.org 
North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is a comprehensive free trade agreement involving Canada, Mexico, and the U.S., implemented on 1 January 1994. Its objectives include: to eliminate barriers to trade in, and to facilitate the cross-border movement of goods and services; to promote conditions of fair competition; to increase investment opportunities; to provide adequate and effective protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights; to create effective procedures for the implementation and application of the Agreement, for its joint administration and for the resolution of disputes; and to establish a framework for further trilateral, regional and multilateral cooperation. http://www.nafta-sec-alena.org 
Organization of American States (OAS) On 30 April 1948, the Charter of the Organization of American States (OAS) was adopted by 21 nations of the hemisphere. It affirmed their commitment to common goals and respect for each nation’s sovereignty. Since then, the OAS has expanded to include the nations of the Caribbean, as well as Canada. Through the Summit of the Americas process, the Heads of State and Government in the hemisphere have given the OAS important responsibilities and mandates, including: human rights; participation of civil society; improving cooperation to address the problem of illegal drugs; supporting the process to create a Free Trade Area of the Americas; education; justice and security. Members (35) include: Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba (excluded from formal participation since 1962), Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, the United States, Uruguay and Venezuela. http://www.oas.org 
Summit Implementation Review Group (SIRG) The Summit Implementation Review Group (SIRG) was created in March 1995 with the purpose of coordinating and implementing the mandates of the Miami Plan of Action. The SIRG is comprised of the 34 democratically elected governments of the hemisphere, which are represented by their appointed National Coordinators. The SIRG is responsible for reporting annually on the progress achieved in the fulfillment of the Plan of Action to the Foreign Ministers. The Ministers review the information on the occasion of the Regular Session of the OAS General Assembly.
Summit of the Americas The Summit of the Americas process, begun after the first Summit of the Americas in December 1994, brings together the Heads of State and Government of the Western Hemisphere to discuss common concerns, seek solutions and develop a shared vision for their future development of the region, be it economic, social or political in nature. http://www.summit-americas.org 
Tariff elimination program Tariff elimination schedules of the countries participating in a trade agreement.
Trade capacity building Development and enhancement of trade-related capacities and core skills of countries through technical cooperation and other forms of assistance to optimize their participation in negotiations, implement their trade commitments, and address the challenges to maximize the benefits of hemispheric integration. See Hemispheric Cooperation Program, page 13.
Trade Negotiations Committee (TNC) As part of the Free Trade Area of the Americas process, the Trade Negotiations Committee (TNC), made up of Vice Ministers of Trade, oversees and manages the FTAA negotiating process. The TNC has the responsibility of guiding the work of the FTAA negotiating groups and special committees, and of deciding on the overall architecture of the agreement and institutional issues.
Treatment of the differences in the level of development and size of the economies Principle that grants countries of differing levels of size and development the possibility to obtain different treatment in the context of the FTAA negotiations. The guidelines for this treatment are set out in the FTAA Trade Negotiations Committee document entitled “Guidelines or Directives for the Treatment of the Differences in the Levels of Development and Size of Economies”. http://www.ftaa-alca.org/TNC/tn18e.asp 
Tripartite Committee (TPC) The Tripartite Committee (TPC) consists of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the Organization of American States (OAS) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC). It provides analytical, technical and financial support to the FTAA process and maintains the official FTAA Website. The Tripartite institutions also provide technical assistance related to FTAA issues, particularly for the smaller economies of the Hemisphere.
U.N. Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) is one of the five regional commissions of the United Nations. It was founded for the purposes of contributing to the economic development of Latin America, coordinating actions directed towards this end, and reinforcing economic relationships among the countries and with the other nations of the world. The promotion of the region's social development was later included among its primary objectives. Members (41) include: Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, France, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Italy, Jamaica, Mexico, Netherlands, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Spain, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay and Venezuela. Associate members (7) include: Anguilla, Aruba, British Virgin Islands, Montserrat, Netherlands Antilles, Puerto Rico and United States Virgin Islands. http://www.eclac.org 
United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Established in December 1966, the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) aims to further the progressive harmonization and unification of international trade law. Members (36) include: Argentina (alternating annually with Uruguay), Austria, Benin, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Canada, China, Colombia, Fiji, France, Germany, Honduras, Hungary, India, Iran, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Lithuania, Mexico, Morocco, Paraguay, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Spain, Sudan, Sweden, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Uganda, United Kingdom and the United States. http://www.uncitral.org 
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Established in 1964, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) aims to enhance the integration of developing countries into the world economy. UNCTAD is the focal point within the United Nations for the integrated treatment of trade and development and interrelated issues in the areas of finance, technology, investment and sustainable development. Members (192) include all members of the United Nations plus the Holy See. http://www.unctad.org 
Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations Launched in September 1986, in Punta del Este, Uruguay, the eighth round of multilateral trade negotiations encompassed a wide-ranging negotiating agenda that covered many new trade policy issues. The resulting agreement, concluded in December 1993 and signed in April 1994, extended the multilateral trading system into several new areas, notably trade in services and intellectual property rights, and brought the important sectors of agriculture and textiles under multilateral trading rules. The Uruguay Round resulted in the establishment of the World Trade Organization in January 1995. http://www.wto.org/english/thewto_e/whatis_e/tif_e/fact5_e.htm 
World Customs Organization (WCO) Established in 1952 as the Customs Co-operation Council, the Council adopted the working name World Customs Organization (WCO) in 1994, to more clearly reflect its transition to a truly global intergovernmental institution. The WCO is an independent intergovernmental body whose mission is to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of customs administrations worldwide. With 159 member governments, it is the main intergovernmental organization with competence over customs matters. http://www.wcoomd.org 
World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Established in1967, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is an international organization dedicated to promoting the use and protection of literary, artistic and scientific works. WIPO is one of the 16 specialized agencies in the United Nations system. It administers 23 international treaties dealing with different aspects of intellectual property protection. The Organization counts 179 nations as members. http://www.wipo.org 
World Trade Organization (WTO) The World Trade Organization (WTO) succeeded the General Agreement on Tariff and Trade (GATT) on 1 January 1995. It is the only multilateral organization that serves as a negotiating forum for the liberalization of trade, a body to oversee the implementation of multilaterally agreed and binding trade rules and a forum for the resolution of trade disputes. The objective of the WTO is to promote the liberalization and expansion of international trade in goods and services under conditions of legal certainty and predictability. The WTO has 146 members. http://www.wto.org