Source: Abreu, M. (1996) "Trade in manufactures: the outcome of the Uruguay Round and developing country interests" in Martin, W. and Winters, L. A. (eds.), The Uruguay Round and the Developing Countries, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
Average Tariffs after the Uruguay Round (%)
Initiated in 1986 (in Punta del Este, Uruguay) the Uruguay Round brought about the biggest reform of the global trading system since the setting of the GATT at the end of the Second World War. It took about 7 years to be ratified and represents the largest trade negotiation ever implemented, and most probably the largest negotiation of any kind. The outcome was a substantial reduction in tariffs, by a factor of 30 to 60% in many industrial sectors. By the mid 1990s, most tariffs were well below 10%, and below 3% in many cases. This outcome considerably lessened trading costs and international trade increased accordingly.
Trade agreements are thus difficult to establish as numerous actors are involved, each having a different stake, and that the benefits of trade tend to be positive from a macroeconomic perspective, but can be negative for specific sectors.