Trade agreements come in all shapes and sizes. Overall, and I, the material provisions of most free trade agreements generally fall into one of two categories: liberalization or governance. The provisions of the liberalisation basket are generally obligations assumed by the parties in order to reduce and limit their protectionism. Explicit tariff reductions, simplification of customs clearance procedures and obligations to open services markets to foreign participants are among the commitments made in trade agreements under the liberalisation category. The free flow of information is essential for free trade in e-commerce and for sectors where data is essential components of the product produced or service provided. The e-commerce provisions concern measures affecting e-commerce and (a) guarantee the free flow of data, b) prevent the forced location of servers and data technologies, c) promote internet security and (d) protect the privacy of individuals and businesses when using and producing content. Countries can insist that foreign companies build local factories as part of the agreement. They may require these companies to become part of the technology and to train a local workforce. The United Kingdom and the United States agree to ensure that technical barriers to trade do not mitigate the liberalization achieved in the remainder of the agreement.
The chapter`s provisions build on best practices within the WTO and the work of the WTO`s Technical Barriers to Trade Committee to ensure that product rules are not developed in an anti-competitive or anti-competitive manner. Trade agreements have now established rules in these and other areas of intellectual property, but it is not even clear that these rules are still economically advantageous. It is important that intellectual property rules protect intellectual property and do not go beyond or create rights where there are none. Studies by economists at the World Bank and elsewhere have shown that border delays are significant barriers to trade. The purpose of the rules is to ensure that customs procedures facilitate and do not impede trade by maximizing predictability, consistency and transparency in border clearance rules.