The following terms will be useful when analyzing the data. A complete metadata with detail information on all the variables will be made available soon.

NTM case

The frequency and coverage statistics are based on ‘NTM cases’. An ‘NTM case’ is the most disaggregated data unit of the survey. Each ‘NTM case’ is multi-dimensional, taking into account the reporting company, the product, the type of NTM, the partner country and, if relevant, related POs, which would be counted separately. Thus, if three products are affected by the same NTM applied by the same partner country and reported by the same company, the results would include three ‘NTM cases’.

A difficulty arises for measures imposed by the exporting country. If the home country of the interviewed companies applies an NTM to a product exported by a company to several countries, the problem will be recorded as a single ‘NTM case’. In such situations, if the company export three products that are affected by the same NTM applied by the home country, the results would include three ‘NTM cases’.

PO case

Each NTM could either create a regulatory obstacle, one (or two and up to three) procedural obstacle (PO) or a combination of one regulatory problem and one (or two and up to three) PO. During the face-to-face stage, each company would necessarily report a minimum of one burdensome NTM and potentially one to three POs.

Business Environment

Companies are asked to indicate whether a specific business environment conditions in their countries is hindering their ability export or import.


The NTM survey covers at least 90% of the total export value of the respective country (excluding minerals and arms) for 13 sectors. The sectors are: Fresh food and raw agro-based products; Processed food and agro-based products; Wood, wood products and paper; Yarn, fabrics and textiles; Chemicals; Leather; Metal and other basic manufacturing; Non-electric machinery; Computers, telecommunications and consumer electronics; Electronic components; Transport equipment; Clothing; Miscellaneous manufacturing. This grouping, used in many ITC studies, is based on the Standard International Trade Classification (SITC) revision 3 and was developed by Mimouni M., Fontagné L., and von Kirchback F.. For more information see The Trade Performance Index, Technical Note, ITC 2007.

For the purpose of analysis the 13 sectors have been aggregated to two. The agriculture sector includes Fresh food and raw agro-based products; and Processed food and agro-based products. The  11 remaining sectors are aggregated to manufacturing sector.


The company size is determined by the number of employees in the company. During the interviews, companies are asked to indicate the number of employees in the company.

For individual country reports the national definition of size based on number of employees is used.

As the definition of company size can vary widely across countries, a standard definition is used for all countries for the purpose of comparability here. Companies with less than 20 employees are small, those with 20-100 employees are medium-sized, and companies with more than 100 employees are defined as large.