DP3720 | Formula Approaches for Market Access Negotiations

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Most of the large tariff reductions achieved in multilateral trade negotiations have involved tariff-cutting formulas such as the ?Swiss? formula. Wide variations in initial tariff rates between active participants, however, call for new approaches under the Doha Development Agenda. This Paper surveys a range of formula options and examines both targeted and flexible applications of the Swiss formula that target tariff escalation and peaks, and would allow policymakers to directly target how far they will move towards free trade, while providing some flexibility for trading off reductions in peak tariffs against reductions in lower-tariff sectors.