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WTO ONLINE TOOLS Where to find tariff data?

In this installment of a series of posts on WTO Online Tools we look at different resources designed to assist in finding tariff data. First, the Tariff Analysis Online, that offers tariff rates on products defined at the highest level of detail, import statistics and the ability to analyse these interactively. Second, the Tariff Download Facility, that provides standardized tariff statistics, in slightly less detail but with the ability to compare between countries immediately. Finally, we briefly look at the World Tariff Profiles, WTO Data portal and each Member country’s page.

Tariff Analysis Online is the most versatile and detailed. The tariffs are available at the level of “tariff line” (eight or more digits of the Harmonized System [HS codes]). At this level of detail, comparisons between countries are not always possible because countries do not always use the same code numbers to define products. However, Tariff Analysis Online does allow a number of options for looking up data and for analysing it online, including tariffs, tariff quotas, imports and countries’ commitments on agricultural subsidies. The results can be viewed on screen or downloaded and printed.

The Tariff Download Facility is simpler. The data on bound, applied and preferential tariffs and import statistics are available in up to six digits HS codes, which are standard for all countries. The Tariff Download Facility provides more detail than a third collection of data, the World Tariff Profiles (a joint publication of the WTO, International Trade Centre (ITC) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), provides comprehensive information on the tariffs and non-tariff measures imposed by over 170 countries and customs territories), where the figures are for broader categories of products.

Tariff Analysis Online and the Tariff Download Facility draw on two databases: the Integrated Database (IDB) and the Consolidated Tariff Schedules (CTS) Database. The Integrated Database (IDB) contains time series of the tariffs applied by WTO members and acceding economies to imports from other WTO members. Data are provided at the most detailed product level (usually the eight to ten digit product level or tariff line code). The database also contains import statistics, including the value and volume of imports by country of origin and by tariff line. The Consolidated Tariff Schedules (CTS) Database contains the agreed maximum tariffs that WTO members can impose on imported products from other WTO members. Both the IDB and CTS are internal databases that cannot be accessed outside of the WTO.

The WTO Data Portal (WTODATA) contains general statistical indicators of international trade, including bound and MFN applied tariffs.

For each Member country one can find services and data in simpler forms through that Member country’s page on the WTO website (see for example Argentina). These pages can be reached from the list of members.