Regional trade agreements (ATRs) have multiplied over the years and have achieved, including a significant increase in major multilateral agreements being negotiated. Non-discrimination between trading partners is one of the fundamental principles of the WTO; However, reciprocal preferential agreements between two or more partners are one of the exceptions and are allowed by the WTO subject to a number of provisions. Information on WTO-notified ATRs is available in the RTA database. Businesses in Member States benefit from increased incentives to trade in new markets as a result of the measures contained in the agreements. Regional trade agreements (ATRs) are agreements between two or more governments that agree to treat trade between them more favourably than goods imported from outside the region. This preferential treatment generally takes the form of the abolition or reduction of tariffs on imports from regional partners and, therefore, the creation of a free trade area. RTAs are generally categorized in a hierarchy ranging from this most fundamental form, the free trade area, to the customs union, through the common market and, ultimately, economic union. A customs union goes beyond the abolition of internal tariffs, which takes place within a free trade area, in order to set common tariffs imposed by all Member States on imports from outside the region. Common markets are customs union unions that also remove barriers to the movement of factors – capital and labour – in the region. Finally, economic unions are common markets that also introduce a common currency.
The preferential trade agreement requires the least commitment to removing trade barriers Trade barriers are legal measures taken primarily to protect a country`s national economy. They generally reduce the amount of goods and services that can be imported. These barriers are put in place in the form of tariffs or taxes and, although Member States do not remove barriers between them. There are also no common trade barriers in preferential trade zones. A regional trade agreement (RTA) is a treaty between two or more governments that sets the trade rules for all signatories. Examples of regional trade agreements include the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the Central American-Dominican Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR), the European Union (EU) and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). The WTO continues to classify these agreements as follows: The logic of formal trade agreements is that they tighten the agreement and sanctions for derogation from the rules established in the agreement.  As a result, trade agreements make misunderstandings less likely and create confidence on both sides in the sanction of fraud; this increases the likelihood of long-term cooperation.  An international organization such as the IMF can further encourage cooperation by monitoring compliance with agreements and reporting violations.  It may be necessary to monitor international agencies to detect non-tariff barriers that are disguised attempts to create barriers to trade.  The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) on January 1, 1989, when it came into force, it was between the United States, Canada and Mexico that agreement was to get rid of customs barriers between the various countries.