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Workshop - CBA Training 21 November 2014

On Friday 21 November a cost-benefit analysis training will be given to participants in the workshop on building institutional capacity in the use of trade-related international support measures. The training will focus on the implementation of surveys for data collection, data processing and data analsysis. The training material can be accessed here .

Bangladesh receives assistance from Canada to enhance DFQF benefits

Canada offers an extended assistance package to Bangladesh, in order to optimise the use of the beneficial market access the latter receives under the Duty-Free Quota-Free market access scheme. Since 2003, nearly all products from LDCs are exempted from import taxes and quotas when entering the Canadian market. The package includes trade facilitation assistance to increase Bangladesh’s exports to Canada; web-based market access services, matchmaking with Canadian importers, outreach and promotion activities for trade representatives, market-entry studies for priority country exporters, a trade-development facility to provide technical assistance and training for Bangladeshi trade...

World Bank Group and WTO team up to enable Trade Facilitation

The World Bank Group and the WTO have decided to increase their collaboration in the context of the Trade Facilitation Agreement Facility. The establishment of the Facility is an initiative from the WTO to help developing countries with the implementation of the Trade Facilitation Agreement. This agreement was concluded in December last year, during the WTO Ministerial Conference in Bali. The Facility aims to provide a safety net for those countries that cannot find the necessary support in the donor community to implement the Trade Facilitation Agreement. The World Bank and the WTO will work together to identify sources of funding and support. The World Bank Group is the largest...

Lesotho and Rwanda among the ten most competitive economies in Sub-Saharan Africa

Two LDCs feature in the top ten list of most competitive Sub Saharan economies: Rwanda and Lesotho. This list is published in the Global Competitiveness Report of the World Economic Forum. The study takes into account twelve measures that influence competitiveness: institutions, infrastructure, macroeconomic environment, higher education and training, goods market efficiency, labour market efficiency, financial market development, technological readiness, market size, business sophistication and innovation. Rwanda occupies the third place. Key factors there are their relatively strong institutions and an efficient goods market and labour market. Lesotho just makes it into the top...

Six LDCs have acceded to the WTO

As of 26 June 2014, six LDCs have acceded to the WTO.  Eight other LDCs are in the process of negotiating their accession packages. 28 LDCs joined the multilateral trade regime before the establishment of the WTO in 1995. LDCs' accession to the WTO (as of June 2014) Country   Application Accession Accession completed Cambodia October 1994 October 2004 Nepal February 1997 April 2004 Samoa* April 1998 May 2012 Vanuatu July 1995 August 2012 Lao's People's Dem. Rep. July 1997 February 2013 Yemen ...

Yemen becomes 160th member of WTO

On June 26 2014, Yemen joined the WTO, after 13 years of negotiating. The country applied for membership in April 2000. The accession was approved by the trade ministers of the member states during the Bali conference in December. With this decision, 97.1 % of the global economy is covered by the WTO’s rules. Yemen is the sixth LDC to join the multilateral trade organization since the WTO was established in 1995. It was preceded by Cambodia (2004), Nepal (2004), Samoa (2012), Vanuatu (2012) and Lao People's Democratic Republic (2013). To become a member, Yemen had to get its legislation in line with the WTO rules on items such as rules of origin, preshipment inspection,...

Pakistan set to offer SAARC LDCs duty free market access

Pakistan is committed to grant LDCs that are member of the SAARC duty-free market access for almost all products. Pakistan uses a sensitive list to exclude products from reductions in duties for its fellow SAARC members. This list will be reviewed for the LDCs, keeping only a few sensitive products on the list to protect the local industry. Pakistan has already reduced the list for all SAARC countries, removing 233 items. The LDCs (and graduated LDCs) that might benefit from this improved market access are Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal and Afghanistan. Source: Dawn

Bangladesh and Turkey about to start trade negotiations to establish FTA

Later this month, a delegation from Bangladesh will travel to Ankara to initiate trade negotiations with Turkey. The objective of these trade talks is to conclude a Free Trade Agreement, addressing the drop in export of Bangladesh’s apparel to Turkey. Higher import duties, imposed by Turkey in 2012, have led to a significant decrease in export from Bangladesh. The countries already agreed to establish an FTA in the spring of 2012, when the levies were about to be implemented. Before these new levies were put into place, LDCs received a duty free market access for apparel, in line with Turkey’s DFQF scheme. In the fiscal year 2013-2014, Bangladesh exported about 856 million USD worth...

LDCs act upon Bali agreement and submit a request on the services waiver

LDCs have submitted a collective request for preferential market access for their services and service-suppliers. This relates to the 2011 Hong Kong declaration, allowing WTO members to deviate from the Most-Favored Nation principle in order to grant LDCs a more advantageous market access in services. At the Bali conference last December, it was decided to breathe life into this until then unheeded services waiver. The Bali agreement stipulates that once the request for a special and different treatment in services has been made, the Council for Trade in Services has six months to set up a high-level meeting. During that meeting, an answer will be formulated; WTO members will...

WTO and other international organizations promise assistance to LDCs for the implementation of the trade facilitation agreement

The WTO, ITC, OECD, UNCTAD, UNECE, World Bank and WCO have declared that they will give LDCs  Trade facilitation-related technical assistance and capacity building support. The trade Facilitation Agreement Facility, as the WTO initiative is called, will aid in the implementation of the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) that was concluded during the Bali Ministerial Conference in December. The agreement links the implementation of its provisions to the capacity of the signatory parties, and includes a commitment to assist countries that need assistance for the implementation. Once the protocol to insert the TFA into the existing regulatory framework is adopted, the Facility will...

Preferential Market Access - Chile

Since 28 February 2014, LDCs are granted Duty-Free, Quota-Free market access by Chile. The QFDF scheme covers all products except for wheat, wheat flour and sugar. All LDCs designated as such by the UN, can receive this beneficial market access. The list of LDCs will be reviewed every three years, by the Ministry of Finance. Chile has also defined rules of origin. A product is considered to be originated in an LDC when (a) wholly obtained or produced in an LDC, (b) produced entirely in an LDC, using only originating materials or (c) produced in an LDC using non-originating materials that conform to regional value content no less than 50 % or a change in tariff heading. More detailed...

Customs Management System

Project Name: Customs Management System Implementing Institutions: UNCTAD Main Donors: Government of Lesotho Duration: November 2012 - Objectives: Implementation of ASYCUDA in Lesotho Link: http://www.unctad.info/en/TC/?mode=AllProjects

Second Private Sector Competitiveness and Economic Diversification Project

Project Name: Second Private Sector Competitiveness and Economic Diversification Project Implementing Institutions: Ministry of Trade and Industry Main Donors: World Bank Duration: October 2013 – April 2019 Objectives: The development objective of the Second Private Sector Competitiveness and Economic Diversification Project for Lesotho is to contribute to the development of selected non-textile sectors resulting in increased private sector investment, firm growth and job creation. The project will comprise two mutually-reinforcing components. The first component of the project is improving the business environment. The objective of this component is to support...

Smallholder Agriculture Development Project

Project Name: Smallholder Agriculture Development Project Implementing Institutions: Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, IFAD Main Donors: World Bank Objectives:  The objective of the Smallholder Agriculture Development Project is to increase marketed output among project beneficiaries in Lesotho's smallholder agriculture sector. There are three components to the project. The first component is increasing agricultural market opportunities. This component support Lesotho's emerging agricultural businesses to contribute to increased commercialization of the agriculture sector. The second component is increasing market oriented smallholder production. This...

Horticulture Productivity and Trade Development

Project Name: Horticulture Productivity and Trade Development Implementing Institutions: International Trade Center, Ministry of Trade, Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security Main Donors: EIF Trust Fund Partners:    Duration: February 2013 – December 2015 Objectives: The objective of the project is to build capacity of Lesotho cooperatives and their members to deliver the markets high value Fresh Fruit and Vegetables (FFVs), through improved commercial and competitive value/supply chains. Link: http://www.intracen.org/layouts/ProjectDetailsTemplate.aspx?pageid=47244640826&id=72692

INCLUDE – Inclusive Development of the Economy

Project Name: INCLUDE – Inclusive Development of the Economy Implementing Institutions: Ministry of Industry Main Donors: GIZ - German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development Duration: 2008 - 2016 Objectives: The project supports the Nepalese Ministry of Industry in promoting inclusive development of the economy in Banke, Dang, Kailali, Pyuthan and Surkhet, five districts in central and far-western Nepal. The project strengthens partner institutions by improving the public–private dialogue. It promotes the economic inclusion of target groups through support for selected value chains such as honey, medicinal aromatic plants and dairy products. ...

Trade Promotion Programme in Nepal

Project Name: Trade Promotion Programme in Nepal Implementing Institutions: Ministry of Commerce and Supplies Main Donors: GIZ Duration: 2013 - 2015 Objectives: In 2010, the Nepalese Ministry of Commerce and Supplies joined with international and bilateral donors to formulate the Nepal Trade Integration Strategy (NTIS). NTIS, the Nepalese Government's roadmap for export-sector development, sets out short to medium-term priorities for trade-driven inclusive growth. NTIS is the government's key instrument for leveraging trade-related development cooperation – Aid for Trade – with multilateral and bilateral donors and thus for significantly improving the country's...

Micro-Enterprise Development Programme (MEDEP)

Project Name:  Micro-Enterprise Development Programme (MEDEP) Implementing Institutions: Ministry of Industry, Nepal Main Donors: Australia Aid, UNDP, Central Queensland University, Australia Duration: 1998 - 2018 Objectives: The Micro-Enterprise Development Programme (MEDEP) is creating employment and income opportunities for the rural poor by: Providing skill and business training and other support, mainly for women and poor and disadvantaged people to set up micro-enterprises; Helping establish business support services and representative organisations for micro-entrepreneurs; and Working with the government to improve the policy environment. ...

Project development - Enhancing export capacities of Asian LDCs

Project Name: Project development: Enhancing export capacities of Asian LDCs Implementing Institutions: International Trade Center Main Donors: ITC Trust Fund Window 1 Objectives: To design a project plan for the China-funded project "Enhancing Export Capacity for Asian LDCs" Link: http://www.intracen.org/layouts/ProjectDetailsTemplate.aspx?pageid=47244640826&id=47244642028 http://www.intracen.org/news/China-to-partner-with-ITC-in-boosting-export-capacities-of-Asian-LDCs/

T4SD Small Traders Capacity Building

Project Name: T4SD Small Traders Capacity Building Implementing Institutions: International Trade Center Main Donors: EU Commission (DG Trade) Duration: February 2013 – December 2015 Objectives: Small businesses for the backbone of many economies in lower-income developing countries. Studies also show that small and medium enterprise (SME) development is closely linked with economic growth and job creation. Nevertheless, small and medium firms face higher barriers to finance, and suffer disproportionately from complex administrative procedures, a lack of trade and market access information (tariffs, trade flows, standards etc.), training, and high transaction...