Trade Barriers To Protect The Domestic Industry Economics Essay


Despite all the apparent benefits of international trade, authoritiess have a inclination to set up trade barriers to protect the domestic industry. There are two sorts of barriers: duty and non-tariff.

Duty Barriers

Duty is a revenue enhancement levied on goods traded internationally, that is on imports. As a consequence, the monetary value degree of imported merchandises rises and the demand for them lessening, therefore imports are less.

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Non-tariff Barriers

Non-Tariff Barriers ( NTBs ) include all the regulations, ordinances and bureaucratic holds that help in maintaining foreign goods out of the domestic markets. Baldwin[ 1 ]defined a “ non-tariff deformation ” as “ any step ( public or private ) that causes internationally traded goods and services, or resources devoted to the production of these goods and services, to be allocated in such a manner as to cut down possible existent universe income.


After the World War II, many states focused on protecting place industries. So, international trade was hampered by terrible trade limitations. To rectify this state of affairs, 23 states joined together in 1947 and signed the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade ( GATT ) , which stimulated free trade by modulating and heavy duties. The work of GATT is sustained by the World Trade Organization ( WTO ) which encourages planetary commercialism and reduces trade barriers. Duties on goods and services have been reduced to low degrees through eight consecutive unit of ammunitions of the WTO ; still there has been a important addition of Non-Tariff Measurements which are earnestly impeding trade. Countries use many mechanisms to curtail imports.

NTBs have gained importance as duty degrees have been reduced worldwide. They are the greatest individual menace to a broad universe trading system and they are going more widespread: the per centum of industrial states ‘ entire imports subject to NTBs rose from 25 % in 1981 to 27 % in 1983 and they are even higher today. NTBs are hence one of the most of import issues in the unit of ammunition of international trade dialogues.


Non- Duty Barriers to merchandise can be categorized in six types:

Specific Limitations on Trade:

Quota portions

A quota is a limitation in value or in physical footings, imposed on import and export of certain goods for a certain period of clip. For illustration, the US has imposed a quota on fabrics imported from India and other states.

Import licenses/ Restrictive licences

Import licensing can be defined as administrative processs necessitating the entry of an application or other certification, other than those required for imposts intents, to the relevant administrative organic structure as a anterior status for importing of goods[ 2 ]. For illustration, in Washington, cheese and cheese merchandises are capable to the demands of the Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Agriculture and most importings of cheese require an import licence and are capable to quotas administered by the Department of Agriculture, Foreign Agricultural Service[ 3 ]. In Mauritius, pesticides require import license from the Ministry of Health, weaponries and ammos require import license from the constabulary and many others.[ 4 ]

Exchange controls

This is supervising the sum of foreign exchange available to occupants for buying foreign goods domestically or while going abroad is another manner of curtailing imports. Foreign exchange limitations and foreign exchange controls occupy a particular topographic point among the non-tariff regulative instruments of foreign economic activity. Foreign exchange limitations constitute the ordinance of minutess of occupants and nonresidents with currency and other currency values.

Import bans/ restrictions

This is a authorities order prohibiting imports of a specific sort or from a peculiar state. For illustration, in order to protect the domestic makers against inexpensive competition from the adjacent state, the authorities of India imposed prohibition on the import of Chinese playthings. Furthermore, many states, like for illustration India, have impose a prohibition on nutrient imports from Japan fearing taint. Furthermore following a milk dirt that led to the widespread toxic condition of babes in China, India banned the import of milk and milk merchandises from China.


Embargo is a peculiar type of quotas forbiding the trade, in other words, when imports from a specific state are wholly banned. It is largely put in topographic point due to political grounds. For illustration, the United Nations imposed an trade stoppage on trade with Iraq as a portion of economic countenances in 1990.

Customss and Administrative Entry Procedures

Customss Evaluation

There is a normally held position that the bill values of goods traded internationally do non reflect their existent cost. This gave rise to a really subjective system of rating of imports and exports for levy of responsibility. If the value ascribed to a peculiar merchandise would turn out to be well higher than its existent cost, it could stop in impacting its fight by increasing the sum cost to the importer due to the extra responsibility. This would hence act as a barrier to international trade.

Antidumping pattern

If a company exports a merchandise at a monetary value lower than the monetary value it usually charges on its ain place market, it is said to be “ dumping ” the merchandise. Antidumping is forbiding a state to dump, that is, to export goods at usual lower monetary values.

Documentation demands

This is when complicated and unneeded certification demands are asked by the importation states. In Mauritius, harmonizing to the Mauritius chamber of commercialism and Industry of Mauritius, these imports paperss are required ; bill, demoing the FOB and CIF value of goods ; packaging lists ; measure of ladling ; measure of entry ; and where applicable ; insurance certification, certification of review, certification of beginning and imports licenses[ 5 ].

Rules of beginning

Determining where a merchandise comes from is no longer easy when natural stuffs and parts across the Earth are used as inputs in the fabrication workss. Rules of beginning are of import in implementing such trade policy instruments as anti-dumping and offseting responsibilities, beginning marker, and safeguard steps.

Technical barriers to merchandise

Technical Barriers

States by and large specify some quality criterions to be met by imported goods for assorted wellness, public assistance and safety grounds. In Mauritius, rice ( imported by bargainers other than the State Trading Corporation ) should non transcend 10 % broken rice, bakeshop additives shall non incorporate potassium bromate as an ingredient[ 6 ], etc. This installation can be misused for barricading the import of certain goods from specific states by puting up of such criterions, which intentionally exclude these merchandises. The procedure is farther complicated by the demand that proving and enfranchisement of the merchandises sing their meeting the set criterions be done merely in the importing state.

The Precautionary Principle

The precautional rule, is a authorities limitations on trade in the context of environmental and wellness concerns, frequently irrespective of cost or scientific grounds. The precautional rule has been interpreted by some to intend that new chemicals and engineerings should be considered unsafe until proved otherwise. It therefore requires those responsible for an activity or procedure to set up its harmlessness and to be apt if harm occurs.

Sanitary and phyto-sanitary conditions

This is a limitation on imports from certain topographic points in order to protect consumers, the environment, or agribusiness from harmful diseases or plagues that may attach to the imported merchandise. For case, in Mauritius, agricultural goods require a phytosanitary certification from the ministry of Agriculture, prepared nutrients, drugs, and chemicals with possible inauspicious effects on wellness require phytosanitary certification from the Ministry of Health.[ 7 ]

Boxing conditions, labeling conditions and merchandise criterions.

States normally impose criterions on categorization, labeling and proving of merchandises in order to be able to sell domestic merchandises, but besides to barricade gross revenues of merchandises of foreign industry. These criterions are on occasion entered under the alibi of protecting the safety and wellness of local populations. In Mauritius, the constitution in charge for the control of criterions chiefly for nutrient and other points is the Mauritius Standards Bureau.

In add-on, European exporters and investors are confronting an increasing figure of indefensible non-tariff barriers in the signifier of merchandise enfranchisement, labeling criterions, import blessing demands and imposts clearance holds.

Besides, many of the Chinese criterions such as the CCC criterion require enfranchisement by the Chinese governments before a merchandise can be put on the Chinese market. Important information has to be submitted and the mill has frequently to be inspected at the disbursal of the exporter.

Government Participation in Trade

Complex regulative environment

Some states have complex regulative model, for e.g. complex concern enrollment and licence, and therefore this shackle free trade. For case, regulations late enacted in China, prohibit European fiscal information bureaus and operators to sell straight their services clients in China.

Government procurance policies

This is another type of NTB where authoritiess reasonably often follow the policy of securing their demands ( including that of government-owned companies ) merely from local manufacturers, or at least widen some monetary value advantage to them. This closes a large potency market to the foreign manufacturers.

Subsidies to Local Goods

This occurs when authoritiess straight or indirectly subsidise local production in an attempt to do it more competitory in the domestic and foreign markets. For illustration, revenue enhancement benefits may be extended to a house bring forthing in a certain portion of the state to cut down regional instabilities, or responsibility drawbacks may be allowed for exported goods, or, as an utmost instance, local houses may be given direct subsidies to enable them to sell their goods at a lower monetary value than foreign houses.

Offseting responsibilities

This is a responsibility placed on imported goods that are being subsidized by the importing authorities. This helps to flush the playing field between the domestic manufacturers and the foreign manufacturers having subsidies.

“ Buy national ” policy

This is a policy hosted by the authorities to assist the national economic system. For case, in 2009, the Paraguayan Finance Ministry specified alterations to public procurance policy in relation to the national stimulation program. That is, public organic structures that seek to pass money from the stimulation money are to give penchant to national goods and services. More specifically, domestic goods shall have a discriminatory border of 70 per centum over imported merchandises. In footings of labour, the proclamation declares that at least 70 per centum of the labour involved in stimulus undertakings shall come from local employees populating in the district of the undertaking public authorization.

Charges on imports

Variable import levy

AA variable import levyA is aA levyA on imports that raises their monetary value to a degree at least every bit high as the domestic monetary value. Such levies are adjusted often in response to alterations in universe market monetary values, and are imposed to support administered monetary values set above universe market monetary values. Under theA Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture, the variable levies of the EU have been converted into fixed duties or tariff-rate quotas.

Boundary line revenue enhancements

It is a revenue enhancement system for imports and exports, particularly one that compensates for internal revenue enhancements in Common Market states by imposing fees or paying discounts.


Voluntary Export Restraints

This is an act of restricting exports. It happens when a state confronting a relentless immense trade shortage against another state pressurized the latter to adhere to a self-imposed bound on the exports. For case, after confronting consistent trade shortages over a figure of old ages with Japan, the US persuaded it to enforce such bounds on itself.

Direct and Indirect Restrictions on Foreign Investings

A state may straight curtail foreign investing to some specific sectors or up to a certain per centum of equity. Indirect limitations may come in the signifier of bounds on net incomes that can be repatriated or prohibition of payment of royalty to a foreign parent company. These limitations discourage foreign manufacturers from puting up domestic operations. Foreign companies are by and large interested in puting up local operations when they foresee increased gross revenues or decreased costs as a effect. Therefore, limitations against foreign investings add hindrances to international trade by giving rise to inefficiencies.


The decrease of duties in progressive unit of ammunitions of trade liberalisation at the many-sided and regional degrees has been mirrored by the rise to prominence of NTBs. NTBs for case specific restrictions on trade and charges on imports such as quotas, import prohibition and so on, will straight impact trade negatively as they will impact on exporting states by diminishing or prohibition their exports. Although trade stoppage is normally introduced for political intents, the effects, in kernel, could be economic.

This lessening or prohibition in exports, if it was of an of import quantity/ value, will make serious economic calamity for the exportation states and may ensue in Balance of Payments lack, a lessening in GDP, an addition in the degree of unemployment and if nil is done to rectify the state of affairs, the state can travel in a recession.

NTBs in the imposts and disposal entry processs class and in the criterions class do non straight hamper free trade but they add to concern cost. These proving processs being expensive, clip consuming and cumbersome to the exporters, act as a trade barrier. This will finally raise their costs, taking to higher monetary values therefore doing them less competitory at international degree, and little and average endeavors may be discouraged to export. A graphic illustration is in Iran whereA NTBs negatively impact on the trade of Pistacia vera and runt merchandises. The most of import grounds for the decreased export of these merchandises are Sanitary Phyto-Sanitary ( SPS ) and Technical Barriers ( TB ) . Harmonizing to WTO regulations, states are allowed to follow ordinances under the SPS and TB understandings in order to protect human, animate being and works wellness every bit good as the environment, wildlife and human safety.[ 8 ]

However, by enforcing NTBs, both counties will lose, that is, the state which imposes the NTMs besides loses. This can be demonstrated by the undermentioned facts: for case, Nipponese consumers pay five times the universe monetary value for rice because of import limitations protecting Nipponese husbandmans. American consumers besides suffer from the same dual load, paying six times the universe monetary value for sugar because of trade limitations. Hence, leting free trade in a manner will profit everyone. European consumers pay in a heartfelt way for limitations on nutrient imports and heavy revenue enhancements for domestic farm subsidies.[ 9 ]


The action should get down from the top, that is, from the WTO itself. The WTO has already reached some understandings like the “ Anti-dumping Agreement, SPS understandings, proficient barriers understandings and many other understandings.

Furthermore, RTAs is the first measure to cut down NTBs, as it is easier to acquire the consensus of all an RTA members on a affair that the consensus of all the WTO members. In add-on, RTAs usually constitute of state members with a similar/ more or less the same economic background. For case, in ASEAN, most members are from developing states while EU has members from developed states. As a consequence, taking NTBs will benefits all the members equivalently.

For illustration, there has already been an understanding on the general characteristics of the procedure for extinguishing NTBs in ASEAN. The procedure Involves, confirmation of information on NTBs, prioritisation of products/NTBs, developing specific work programmes, and obtaining a authorization from the ASEAN Economic Ministers to implement the work programme.[ 10 ]

In add-on, different RTAs have different methods of cut downing NTMs. Such as, the Working Party on Regulatory Cooperation and Standardization Policies aims at constructing a shared regulative model and at accomplishing greater security for consumers and workers, better protection for the environment and reduced cost for international trade.[ 11 ]They besides developed criterions for agricultural green goods that define minimal quality demands in order to ease the trading procedure.


Free trade, will certainly benefits many states. Therefore in order to let trade to happen freely, duties every bit good as non-tariff barriers need to be reduced.

However, sometimes for safety grounds, some NTMs are required. For case the import prohibition on nutrient from Japan is necessary in order to avoid the proliferation of the radioactive taint.

Therefore some trade limitations may be necessary for states to guarantee the safety of the nutrient supply and the wellness of workss, animate beings and the environment. However, sometimes authoritiess travel beyond what is necessary to protect domestic industries.A

Furthermore, free trade can increase the poorness spread. This is so because developing states and LDCs will non be able to vie with developed states and multinationals may engraft themselves in the LDCs merely to harvest the benefit of inexpensive labor and resources and does non lend more to the development of those LDCs.

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