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A WTO agreement implemented to prevent import licensing procedures from unnecessarily reducing or distorting international trade flows. The agreement, which entered into force on January 1, 1995, is a successor agreement to the Tokyo Round Import Licensing Code, which entered into force on January 1, 1980. During the Uruguay Round, the Import Licensing Code was revised to strengthen the disciplines on transparency and notification. Whereas the Import Licensing Code obligated only those countries that had signed and ratified it, the WTO Agreement on Import Licensing Procedures is a multilateral agreement binding on all WTO members. Under the agreement, WTO members must ensure that their import licensing procedures conform to the relevant provisions of the GATT, are applied neutrally, and are implemented fairly and equitably.
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