Tariff rate quota administration and implementation are empirically evaluated for the fourteen developing countries notifying the WTO of the use of TRQs. FAO trade data, UNCTAD data on applied tariffs and the WTO notifications permit us to assess underfill of quotas, discrimination among exporters, use of state trading as an implementation mechanism, and the extent of protection under these TRQs. Substantial liberalization was found, generally due to use of low MFN tariffs rather than through TRQs permitting greater market access. High tariff bindings and endogenous quotas allow these countries to pursue flexible trade regimes within their WTO commitments.


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