- trade between countries, free from governmental restrictions or duties.
- international trade free from protective duties and subject only to such tariffs as are needed for revenue.
- the system, principles, or maintenance of such trade.
- Chiefly Scot. smuggling.
Origin of free trade
First recorded in 1600–10
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for free trade
The new guidelines do not impinge on the free-trade agreement or other agreements governing cultural and sports exchanges.Business Is Personal: Why the EU's New Guidelines Could Hurt Israel's Economy
July 17, 2013
President Bush first submitted the Colombia free-trade deal to Congress in April 2008.
The free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia, and Panama are marginal contributors to this growth.
For much of the early part of the Obama administration, the free-trade agreements languished.
When Obama was struggling to negotiate a South Korean free-trade agreement, “I remember a story above the fold.”Inside Obama's Tax-Cut Gamble
December 8, 2010
For this reason Great Britain is practically a free-trade country.Commercial Geography
Jacques W. Redway
The existence at one time of this form of "free-trade" is all but forgotten.The Light of Scarthey
If they had Free-trade they wouldn't be starving: if they were not starving they wouldn't drink.
Thank'ee, zir, thank'ee; hurrah for Duke Dugdale and Free-trade!
Berlin itself, and some other things, did not spring from Free-trade.
- international trade that is free of such government interference as import quotas, export subsidies, protective tariffs, etcCompare protection (def. 3)
- archaic illicit trade; smuggling
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.