Regulatory Convergence Against Non-Tariff Barriers in ASEAN and the Effectiveness of the ASEAN Trade Repository (ATR)

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Haniff Ahamat Nurul Hanan Abdull Manaf


The regulation of non-tariff barriers in the context of ASEAN has many complications. One of them is the difficulty of defining and (NTBs) classifying NTBs. This limits the scope of the regulation of NTBs in the existing WTO covered agreements as well as in the ASEAN Economic Community instruments including the ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA). This paper tries to address that issue by resorting to the soft approach. The soft approach tool selected is the ASEAN Trade Repository (ATR). This paper analyses the electronic content of the ATR which like any regional trade portal embodies the non-tariff measures (NTMs) introduced by ASEAN Member States (AMS) and the laws, regulations and orders on which they are based. This paper finds that the success of the ATR in addressing the NTMs depends on the success of AMS’ National Trade Repositories (NTRs). This paper finds that for most AMS, there is connectivity between ATR and NTRs. But there are challenges to the effective implementation of the ATR. This paper concludes by linking the analysis of the ATR to addressing the inadequacies in the regulation of NTBs in ASEAN. The ATR facilitates the identification of NTMs which should be eliminated as NTBs.


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How to Cite
Ahamat, H., & Abdull Manaf, N. H. (2018). Regulatory Convergence Against Non-Tariff Barriers in ASEAN and the Effectiveness of the ASEAN Trade Repository (ATR). ASEAN Journal of Legal Studies, 1(1), 1-12. Retrieved from
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