The Uruguay Round Agricultural Agreement remains the most important agreement in the history of trade negotiations for the liberalisation of agricultural trade. The aim of the agreement was to improve market access for agricultural products, reduce national aid to agriculture in the form of price-distorting subsidies and quotas, eliminate agricultural export subsidies over time and harmonize health and plant health measures among Member States as much as possible. In addition to facilitating applied tariff reductions, GATT`s contribution to trade liberalization includes “the commitment of extended-term tariff reductions (which became more sustainable in 1955), the definition of universality of non-discrimination through the treatment of the most favoured nation (MFN) and the status of domestic treatment, ensuring greater transparency in trade policies and creating a forum for negotiations and the peaceful settlement of bilateral disputes. All of these have helped to streamline trade policy and reduce trade barriers and political uncertainty.  MFN treatment: Under Article II of the GATS, members are allowed to provide services or service providers to all other members without delay and without conditions, “a treatment that is no less favourable than that given to comparable services and service providers in another country.” In principle, this is a prohibition of preferential regimes between groups of members in certain sectors or reciprocity rules that limit access to the dense to trading partners who give similar treatment. In May 1963, ministers agreed on three negotiating objectives: transparency: GATS members are required, among other things, to publish all measures of general application and to set up national investigative bodies to respond to requests for information from other members. This statement served as the basis for the so-called “Malthouse Compromise” between conservative parties on how to replace the withdrawal agreement.  However, this plan was rejected by Parliament.  The assertion that Article 24 could be used was also adopted by Boris Johnson during his 2019 campaign as leader of the Conservative Party. Exceptions may be granted in the form of Article II exceptions.
Members could apply for such exemptions before the agreement came into force. New derogations may only be granted to new members at the time of accession or, in the case of current members, by a derogation under Article IX:3 of the WTO agreement. All exceptions are subject to review; they should not, in principle, last more than 10 years. In addition, the GATS allows groups of members to enter into economic integration agreements or to mutually recognize regulatory standards, certificates and others when certain conditions are met. Agriculture has been essentially excluded from previous agreements, as it has been granted special status in the areas of import quotas and export subsidies, with slight reserves. However, at the time of the Uruguay Round, many countries considered the agricultural exception so egregious that they refused to sign a new no-move agreement for agricultural products. These fourteen countries were known as the “Cairns Group” and consisted mainly of small and medium-sized agricultural exporters such as Australia, Brazil, Canada, Indonesia and New Zealand. The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) is a legal agreement between many countries whose overall objective was to promote international trade by removing or removing trade barriers, such as tariffs or quotas.