Trade Agreement Act 1934

The Reciprocal Tariff Act (enacted June 12, 1934, chap. 474, 48,943, 19 U.S.C§ 1351) provided for the negotiation of customs agreements between the United States and certain nations, particularly Latin American countries. [1] The law served as an institutional reform to allow the president to negotiate with foreign nations to reduce tariffs in exchange for reciprocal tariff reductions in the United States. This has resulted in a reduction in tariffs. 38. See Kelly, William B. Jr., “Antecedents of Present Commercial Policy, 1922-1934,” in Kelly, ed., Etudes in United Stares Commercial Policy (Chapel Hill, N.C. University of North Carolina Press, 1963). Google Scholar RTAA`s new approach freed Roosevelt and Congress from breaking this trend of tariff hikes. It has linked U.S. tariff reductions to reciprocal tariff reductions with international partners. It also allowed Congress to approve tariffs by simple majority, unlike the two-thirds majority required for other treaties. In addition, the president had the power to negotiate the terms.

The three trade policy innovations have created the political will and feasibility of implementing a more liberal trade policy. [3] International cooperation flourished and concrete institutions were put in place, led by the United States and the United Kingdom. The International Monetary Fund was created during discussions at the Bretton Woods Conference of 1944. The first international trade body, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), was established until 1949. In 1994, GATT was replaced by the World Trade Organization (WTO), which still monitors international trade agreements.