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Glossary of terms for users of the WTO Quantitative Restrictions Website
General information

The QR Glossary intends to provide support material for users of the QR website. It covers terms specific to the QR website, as well as terms applying to customs tariffs and international trade in goods. It was prepared by the Market Access Division Secretariat under its own responsibility and without prejudice to the positions of Members and to their rights and obligations under the WTO.

 

The glossary has been compiled from both Secretariat and external sources.  While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, the Secretariat accepts no responsibility for any errors or omissions in the material provided. In some instances, material from external sources has been changed slightly for editing purposes.

 

The term "country" in the glossary does not imply an expression of opinion by the WTO Secretariat concerning the status of any country, territory or area or the delimitation of its frontiers, or the rights and obligations of any WTO Member in respect of WTO agreements.


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Hamonized System

An international nomenclature developed by the World Customs Organization, which is arranged in six-digit codes allowing all participating countries to classify traded goods on a common basis. Beyond the six-digit level, countries are free to introduce national distinctions for tariffs and many other purposes (tariff lines). Under the HS, the broadest categories of products are identified by two-digit “chapters” (e.g. 04 is dairy products, eggs and other edible animal products). These are then sub-divided by adding more digits: the higher the number of digits, the more detailed the categories. For example the four-digit code or “heading” 0403 is a group of products derived from milk. At six digits, 0403.10 is the “sub-heading” yoghurt; at the eight-digit or “tariff-line” level, 0403.10.11 could be low-fat yoghurt.



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