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The GATS covers all services with a few exceptions. The list of service sectors and sub-sectors covered is on the list of services. The existence of specific commitments entails other obligations relating, among other things, to the notification of new measures having a significant impact on trade and the prevention of restrictions on international payments and transfers. While services currently account for more than two-thirds of world output and employment, they account for no more than 25% of total trade, as measured by the balance of payments. But this apparently modest proportion should not be underestimated. Indeed, the balance of payments statistics do not cover one of the types of services defined in the GATS, i.e. the supply by commercial presence in another country (mode 3). Although services are increasingly being exchanged in their own legislation, they also serve as essential inputs for the production of goods and, therefore, services, when value-added, account for about 50% of world trade. In addition, the Air Services Annex exempts air duty and service measures directly related to the exercise of these rights.

On 15 April 1994, at the ministerial meeting in Marrakech, ministers from more than 100 countries signed the final act of Uruguay`s multilateral trade round. This is the end of the eighth round of GATT trade negotiations, which began in Punta del Este, Uruguay, in September 1986. As part of the World Trade Organization (WTO) agreement, the package includes agreements on topics as varied as agriculture, textiles, intellectual property and trade-related investment measures. And for the first time, the parties have established global rules on trade in services through the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS). The GATS is expected to enter into force with the WTO on 1 January 1995. The GATS agreement includes four types of service delivery in cross-border trade:[3] GATS commitments can be divided into two broad groups: general commitments that apply to all members and service sectors and commitments that apply only to sectors on a member`s list of commitments. These obligations are defined in individual timetables, the scope of which can vary considerably from one Member State to another.

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