Annual Forum Papers

Formulas for Success? Some Options for Market Access Negotiations

  • Year: 2002
  • Author(s): Joseph Francois; Will Martin

Most of the large tariff reductions achieved in multilateral trade negotiations have involved the use of tariff-cutting formulas, such as the "Swiss" formula. But the wide variations in initial tariff rates may create a demand for new approaches in the Doha Development Agenda. This paper surveys some options and examines the implications of a range of "flexible" formula approaches that target tariff escalation and peaks, and allow policy makers 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 low-tariff sectors.