Although Article XXIV of the GATT allows WTO members to establish free trade areas or to adopt interim agreements necessary for their establishment, there are several conditions with respect to free trade areas or interim agreements that lead to the creation of free trade areas. Unlike a customs union, parties to a free trade agreement do not have common external tariffs, which means that they apply different tariffs and other directives to non-members. This feature allows non-parties to obtain footsp preferences under a free trade agreement by entering the market with the lowest external tariffs. Such a risk requires the introduction of rules for determining which originating products are eligible for preferences under a free trade agreement, a need that does not arise in the context of the creation of a customs union.  In principle, a minimum volume of processing is required, resulting in a “substantial transformation” of the goods in order for them to be considered originating. In defining the products originating in the ATP, the preferential rules of origin distinguish between originating and non-originating products: only the former are entitled to the preferential duties set by the FREE TRADE AGREEMENT, the latter must pay the most-favoured-nation duties.  Few topics divide economists and the general public as much as free trade. The research findings indicate that economists at U.S. university faculties are seven times more likely to support free trade policy than the general public. In fact, the American economist Milton Friedman said, “The economic profession almost agreed on the desire for free trade.” The United States has another multilateral regional trade agreement: the Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR).
This agreement with Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua eliminated tariffs on more than 80% of the United States. Exports of non-textile industrial goods. The United States currently has a number of free trade agreements. .