DEFINITION of 'Commercial Policy'

The regulations and policies that determine how a country conducts trade with other countries. A country's commercial policy includes the use of tariffs and other trade barriers, such as restrictions on what goods can be imported or exported, and which countries are allowed to import or export goods to the home country.

Countries that are part of an economic union often have a single commercial policy that determines how member countries can interact with non-member countries. An example of an organization with a common commercial policy is the European Union.

BREAKING DOWN 'Commercial Policy'

Commercial policies are a point of contention in international trade, and are one of the underlying reasons for the existence of organizations such as the World Trade Organization (WTO). Because a country's commercial policy can include the use of tariffs and trade barriers, free trade is negatively impacted.

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