Trade Restrictions

by Otelia Barratt, April 2015

300 words

1 page


Although international trade is flourishing nowadays, various members of the global community extensively apply versatile limitation on free trade. The policy of trade restrictions is engendered by numerous factors. Some countries aspire to protect the natural manufacturer, while others view artificially created trade restrictions as the method of political, economic and in some cases even military maneuvering. To illustrate, the entire Eurozone is boycotting commodities from the countries with the low rate of democracy like Albania or White Russia. The aim of this essay is to outline three major types of trade restrictions and to discuss their efficiency and existing shortcomings. The first and the most widely applied method is the imposing of different tariffs on the imported goods. Tariffs, also known as ‘customs’, are regarded as taxes imposed on the commodities and services imported into the country or exported wherein. These techniques are used in order to encourage trade with a specific country or vice versa to ‘kill’ the trade. By leveling the tariffs, the favor to a specific state is defined. In order to boost the development of a certain industry, the government may abolish the tariffs. The second type of trade limitations is the embargo. Scholars define embargo as a partial or complete banning of trade relations with a certain country. The aim of the embargo is to insulate the country economically and therefore to weaken the economic and political standing of a certain government. The most exemplary illustration is the long-lasting US embargo on the Cuban goods, which was imposed in 1960 as a response to the Cuban communistic orientation and is still partially in force. Another widely used type of trade limitation is health and environmental standards imposed by the government of a country of import, i.e. in order to import certain goods into the country, the importer must evidence that the goods completely conform to the regulations. Overall, my firm standpoint is that tariffs is the most effective and dynamic tool of trade control. The major advantage of this method is its flexibility. While embargo and health restriction require legal and medical justification respectively, the imposing of tariffs may be always accounted for the changes in the fiscal policy of the country of import.


Salvatore, Dominick (2005), Introduction to International Economics (First ed.), Hoboken, NJ: Wiley

Jones, Ronald W. (1961). ‘Compartive Advantage and the Theory of Tariffs’. The Review of Economic Studies



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