Under the GATT (1949-1979), seven rounds of negotiations took place. The first real gaTT trade cycles (1947-1960) focused on further tariff reductions. Then, in the mid-1960s, the Kennedy Round resulted in a GATT anti-dumping agreement and a development section. The Tokyo Round of the 1970s was the first major attempt to remove trade barriers that are not in the form of tariffs and to improve the system and adopt a series of agreements on non-tariff barriers that, in some cases, have interpreted the existing GATT rules and have, in others, introduced entirely new pathways. Since not all GATT members accept these multilateral agreements, they have often been informally referred to as “codes”. (The Uruguay Round amended several of these codes and turned them into multilateral commitments, which were accepted by all WTO members. Only four remained multi-lateral (public markets, beef, civil aircraft and dairy products), but in 1997 WTO members agreed to denounce the beef and milk agreements, leaving only two.  Despite attempts in the mid-1950s and 1960s to create a form of institutional mechanism for international trade, GATT has worked for nearly half a century as a semi-institutional multilateral regime on an interim basis.  As in the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS), the starting point of the ON-TRIPS agreement is the basic principle. As in the other two agreements, non-discrimination plays a major role: national treatment (which does not treat foreigners less favourably than its own nationals) and the MFN (non-discriminatory among nationals of trading partners). The issue is also a key principle in other IP agreements outside the WTO. The second part of the ON TRIPS agreement deals with different types of intellectual property rights and their protection.
The aim is to ensure that minimum standards of protection are organised in all WTO members. The starting point is the commitment of the main international agreements of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) that existed before the creation of the WTO: by applying to all these agreements, the DSU provides for a coherent and integrated dispute resolution system.