On the market access side, the Uruguay round has led to a decisive systemic change: the transition from a situation where a large number of non-tariff measures have hindered agricultural trade flows to a regulation of customs protection linked to reduction obligations. The main aspects of this fundamental change have been the stimulation of investment, production and trade in agriculture, (i) by making conditions for access to the agricultural market more transparent, predictable and competitive; (ii) by establishing or strengthening the link between domestic and international agricultural markets, which means that (iii) the market is more market-dependent to direct limited resources, both in the agricultural sector and in the economy, towards their most productive uses. Substantial reduction of tariff and non-tariff barriers to market entry is, along with the elimination of discrimination, the WTO`s most important instrument in achieving its overall objectives. The agriculture agreement contains a special treatment clause (Annex 5) which allows four countries, under strictly defined conditions, to maintain non-tariff measures for certain products during the tariff reduction period (with the possibility of extension of special treatment, subject to continued negotiations). One of the conditions is to provide market access for the products concerned in the form of a gradual increase in import quotas. The products and countries concerned are: rice in the case of Japan, Korea and the Philippines; Cheese and sheep meat in the case of Israel. Since 1 April 1999, Japan has no special treatment. Today, for many products and countries, non-tariff barriers, such as regulations and technical standards, sanitary and plant health measures, customs formalities and procurement practices, are more important than tariffs or quantitative restrictions.  The rules on non-tariff barriers are defined in a number of GATT provisions (e.g.
Article VIII on import and export royalties and formalities) and in several specific WTO agreements, in particular the Technical Barriers to Trade Agreement (TBT)  and the Agreement on the Application of Health and Plant Health Measures (the SPS Agreement) . The application of tariffs on imported products is not prohibited by the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), but later encourages WTO members to gradually reduce tariffs for mutual benefit. Before a country joins the WTO, it will have to negotiate customs commitments with existing members that will later be included in its concession schedule. Considering that Article II, paragraph 1, of the GATT, must not exceed the level to which they were related for a particular product where there is a customs regime.  WTO law includes three broad categories of market access rules: tariff rules (tariffs), quantitative restrictions (quotas) and other rules for other non-tariff barriers, such as regulations and technical standards, sanitary and plant health measures, customs formalities and public procurement practices. In addition, transparency and “justiciability” provisions are also included to ensure effective market access.  > agriculture > balance of payments > balance of payments > tariff assessment > import licensing agreement > information technology agreement > rules of origin > safeguards > health protection measures > state trading enterprises (working group) > subsidies and countervailing measures > technical barriers to trade > textile products > trade facilitation 2. In sectors where market access commitments are made, measures that a Member does not maintain or adopt on the basis of a regional subdivision or on the basis of its entire territory, unless otherwise stated in its timetable, are defined as follows: there can be no international trade without access to the internal market of other countries.