A contract is an official and explicit written agreement that states use to engage legally.  A treaty is an official document that expresses agreement in words; It is also the objective result of a solemn event that recognizes the parties and their defined relationships. The publication of a contract does not require academic accreditation or interdisciplinary background knowledge. A treaty is a formal and binding written agreement that is concluded by actors in international law, usually sovereign states and international organizations, but may involve individuals and other actors.  A treaty can also be described as an international agreement, protocol, treaty, convention, pact or exchange of letters. Regardless of terminology, only instruments that are binding on the parties are considered treaties of international law.  A treaty is binding under international law. This divergence between domestic and international law in the form of non-self-enforcement is relatively unique in the American legal system, but it reflects, in the broadest sense, a general reality of the international system: international laws come into force only through the action of certain sovereign states. States can conclude any number of “legally binding” international agreements, but it is the internal actions of each state – in the form of adopted laws, policies and regulations – that are necessary to meet these international obligations.
For the most part, the international characterization of an agreement as “legally binding” or simply politically binding has little to do with what really needs to happen at the national level to make the agreement effective. A treaty is negotiated by a group of countries, either through an organization created for this purpose or by an existing body such as the United Nations Council on Disarmament (UN). The negotiation process can take several years depending on the subject of the treaty and the number of participating countries. At the end of the negotiations, the treaty will be signed by representatives of the governments concerned. Conditions may require that the treaty be ratified and signed before it becomes legally binding. A government ratifies a treaty by tabling a ratification instrument in a treaty-defined location; the ratification instrument is a document containing formal confirmation of the Government`s acceptance of the provisions of the treaty.