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Although we have tried to use plain English content on the site, you may come across specialist terms and acronyms. Find out what they mean in our glossary of terms.
If you come across a term that isn't included in the Glossary please send us an email.
Tariffs are taxes on goods being exported from one country to another. The effect of these measures is to raise the price of imported goods and make them less competitive in the importing country, to the disadvantage of exporters in the exporting country and consumers in the importing country. The direct and indirect costs of administering such protection may be similar to or exceed the revenue gained.
Non-tariff barriers (NTBs) have a similar effect to tariffs by increasing the compliance costs of getting a product into an overseas market. An NTB is a measure other then a tariff which protects domestic industry. Not all NTBs are “bad” – some are based on legitimate goals, such as the protection of human health (see Sanitary and Phytosanitary and Technical Barriers to Trade).
Reducing tariffs and NTBs is advantageous for both those selling and those buying a product.