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.....so I was reading this: https://blogs.worldbank.org/trade/picture-trade-types-tariffs-explained

"Bound Tariffs are specific commitments made by individual WTO member governments. The bound tariff is the maximum MFN tariff level for a given commodity line. "

Lovely stuff.

A Most Favored Nation (MFN) Tariff is one that WTO member countries promise to impose all of their trading partners who are also WTO members, unless the country is part of a preferential trade agreement (such as a free trade area or customs union). This means that, in practice, MFN rates are the highest (most restrictive) tariffs that WTO members charge one another.

Interesting.

From this I understand that the bound tariff is the max tariff a WTO nation will charge another WTO nation member on imports.

This diagram suggests so:

enter image description here

Then I look here at the US data

enter image description here

So what's going on?

Is this just a case of the US saying they're upper bound is X but they actually break the agreement and charge Y? That's what I assumed. However I would then expect this to show up in the effectively applied tariffs.

But that doesn't seem to hold either:

enter image description here

If US is breaking its stated bounds and applying a higher MFN then the effectively charged rates should be higher.

Can anyone explain this for me?

Moreover, looking at the data I can find little evidence implying increased tariffs since 2016 by the US. The effectively applied rates look pretty flat to me, although the MFN did jump in 2016 so I suppose something is going on there.

enter image description here

So if there's some WTO experts out there I'd be most interested to hear from you.

Many thanks in advance.

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