Trade agreements are the primary mechanism of codifying international rules that govern commercial transactions between countries. Multilateral agreements such as those of the World Trade Organization and regional or bilateral accords contain harmonized and transparent rules that empower governments with tools to minimize unnecessary barriers to trade.

In addition to the tariff-equivalent costs of the non-tariff barriers mentioned above such as the lack of GRP (20%) and ethical conduct (10-30%), the Coalition estimates that the costs due to import procedures and customs inefficiencies in the Americas are equivalent to a 10% import tariff. And whereas the global average import tariff for medical devices is in the 0-2% range for the OECD countries, in Latin America these tariffs are significantly higher, averaging 12% in Brazil for example.

The Coalition supports the establishment of trade agreements to clearly define the common legal frameworks and policy tools to minimize these tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade that apply to the medical technology sector.