It is also important to note that a free trade agreement is a reciprocal agreement that is authorized by Article XXIV of the GATT. Autonomous trade agreements for developing and least developed countries are permitted by the 1979 decision by the signatories of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) («empowerment clause») on differentiated and more favourable treatment, reciprocity and increased participation of developing countries. It forms the legal basis for the WTO`s Generalized Preference System (GSP).  Free trade agreements and preferential trade agreements (as mentioned by the WTO) are considered an exception to the MFN principle.  The trade agreement database provided by the ITC market access map. Given that hundreds of free trade agreements are currently in force and are being negotiated (approximately 800 according to the rules of the intermediary of origin, including non-reciprocal trade agreements), it is important for businesses and policy makers to keep their status in mind. There are a number of free trade agreement custodians available at national, regional or international level. Among the most important are the database on Latin American free trade agreements, established by the Latin American Integration Association (ALADI) , the database managed by the Asian Regional Integration Center (ARIC) with information agreements concluded by Asian countries and the portal on free trade negotiations and agreements of the European Union.  Free trade agreements contribute to the creation of an open and competitive international market.
Together, these agreements mean that about half of all goods entering the United States enter duty-free, according to the government. The average import duty for industrial products is 2%. The rules of origin for a country`s products are set out in a protocol on origin attached to the specific agreement between the EU and the country concerned. The creation of free trade zones is seen as an exception to the most privileged principle of the World Trade Organization (WTO), since the preferences of the parties to the exclusive granting of a free trade area go beyond their accession obligations.  Although GATT Article XXIV authorizes WTO members to establish free trade zones or to conclude interim agreements necessary for their establishment, there are several conditions relating to free trade zones or interim agreements leading to the creation of free trade zones. The market access card was developed by the International Trade Centre (ITC) to support companies, governments and market access researchers. The database, which is visible through the market access map online tool, contains information on tariff and non-tariff barriers in all active trade agreements that are not limited to those that are officially notified to the WTO. It also documents data on non-preferential trade agreements (for example. B generalized preference regimes). Until 2019, Market Access Map has provided downloadable links to text contracts and their rules of origin.  The new version of the Market Access Map, which will be released this year, will provide direct web links to relevant contract sites and connect to other ITC tools, particularly the rules of the original intermediary.