General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)

The general agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) is a multinational agreement on rules designed to foster international trade. The GATT was established in 1947, and by the 1990s, had over 100 signatory nations. The agreement has been revised periodically since its inception through negotiations referred to as rounds, of which there have been seven. For most of its history, the focus of those negotiations was on the reduction of tariffs, taxes imposed on imported good. Although the GATT was a relatively weak entity where disagreements between nations were primarily settled through negotiation, the agreement did facilitate a decrease in average tariffs internationally from 40 percent to roughly 5 percent of the price of imported goods.

During the 1980s, the United States, the world's largest and ...

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