Library of Congress

Law Library of Congress

The Library of Congress > Law Library > News & Events > Global Legal Monitor

World Trade Organization: New Database of Regional Agreements

(Jan. 28, 2009) In January 2009, the World Trade Organization (WTO) launched an online database of regional trade agreements (RTAs). It can be accessed by the public at (last visited Jan. 22, 2009) and can be searched based on jurisdiction or based on other criteria, such as whether the agreement covers goods or services and the year it came into force. It contains all the notifications about RTAs, links to the contents of such agreements, legal provisions, and information on the WTO's assessments of the agreements. In addition, there are downloadable tables of all RTAs currently in effect. The database's establishment fulfills a requirement of the Transparency Decision on RTAs of the WTO General Counsel. For agreements for which the WTO has prepared a “Factual Presentation” or a “Factual Abstract,” the database may also contain information about the timetable established by the RTA for the reduction of tariffs, the status of the trade in goods and services between the parties to the RTA at the time that the RTA enters into force, or key provisions of the RTA and links to brief discussions of these provisions. (Press Release, WTO, WTO Launches New Database on Regional Trade Agreements (Jan. 14, 2009), available at