International trade is generally regulated by governments of trading nations. They usually impose tariffs, which are taxes on certain types of goods. The price of those products rise and makes them less competitive in the market. Besides tariffs, there are other regulations that complicate international trade such as licenses, quotas, and standards. Imposing trade barriers for a long period of time, nations start a trade war. Trade barriers can be used to protect health and national security of nations, but in fact, they are detrimental ways to tackle international conflicts or inefficient domestic production.
Licenses and quotas are most frequently used to regulate import. Licenses work according to the international standards and help countries to stick to the certain level of quality of exported goods. They may allow transportation of a certain product for a specific period of time stated in the documents. Quotas impose quantitative restrictions on the imported goods. Like licenses, they limit the range of goods that can be exported and limit the range of the countries that trade with each other. Countries also establish standards according to which imported production is certified. Frequently, developing nations cannot meet the requirements put by potent economies, which makes them non-competitive at the global market.
Tariffs and various licenses of economically potent nations are frequently criticized for their negative effects on developing countries. Besides, the impact of trade barriers is uneven, which means that governments select which countries are more lucrative to continue trade with. Poor inspection of imported goods still happens, thus, consumers tend to pay higher prices for products of an average or inferior quality.