Frequently, products are under requirements of their characteristics or the manner that they are produced. These requirements may be technical regulations, standards and conformity assessment procedures. The reason of this imposition holds on the protection of life, health, safety, national security, environment or prevention of deceptive marketing. To prevent these measurements from becoming barriers to trade, the World Trade Organization through its Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade tries to ensure that requirements do not create unnecessary obstacles to commerce.
But, in some cases, governments try to promote development, competiveness or innovation of its domestic industries with indigenous technologies, setting technical standards that, for instance, can only be achieved by its national firms. This situation brings about trade frictions with other trading nations, which aim to compete in a trade liberalized scenario, and could start eventual trade disputes. This study will analyze the attempts to set technical standards in the high technology industries in Japan, China and Korea, explaining the government role in these policies, the analysis of these practices under the WTO commitments and its implications in the international trade environment.