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GATT is the symbol which corresponds to General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (General Agreement on customs tariffs and trade). It is a convention dating from the Havana Conference of 1947 and which was signed a year later by 23 countries, to establish a set of trade standards and customs concessions.
As the World Bank, GATT is one of the initiatives created following the second world war to set the global economy. It is considered the precursor of the world Organization of trade (WTO).
The first version of this agreement is known under the name of GATT 1947. In the 50's and 60's, economists consider that GATT has contributed to global growth through continued reductions of tariffs. By against, during the following decades (70s and 80s), the convention suffered a crisis given that, to cope with strong competition, Europe and the USA have set high while interest rates dedicated to protectionism.
In 1994, the GATT was updated giving rise to the WTO. The 75 members of the GATT and the European Community (EC) countries are the founding members of this organization, which was born on January 1, 1995.
It is noted that the GATT and the WTO are not the same thing. GATT is a system of rules laid down by the nations that compose while the WTO is an international organization. In addition to trade in goods, the WTO takes over issues related to services and intellectual property rights sector.