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Development Account Projects

Enhancing effective participation of developing countries in dynamic and new sectors of international trade

Background:

Development gains from international trade, and the use of trade as a genuine engine of growth, development and poverty reduction, may be achieved through the participation of developing countries in dynamic and new sectors of world trade. Such sectors include manufacturing (such as electronics and electrical products), commodities and alternative energy-based products (such as biofuels), and information technology-enabled services. By establishing new production and export capacities in these technologically advanced sectors, developing countries, especially least developed countries, can create new market opportunities regionally and globally and thus achieve substantial new development-oriented outcomes.

A key challenge is to package the existing positive experiences and related knowledge of successful developing countries into useable information and capacity-building activities that can be shared with other developing countries to stimulate innovation by investment, production and trade in new products and services. Furthermore, the setting up of related information (knowledge) networks involving Governments, industries and civil-society stakeholders becomes a critical step for promoting developing countries’ participation in new and dynamic sectors of world trade. The project builds upon lessons learned from the UNCTAD intergovernmental reviews and specific requests from member States. It is also based on the positive experience gained as a result of a partnership established between UNCTAD and the private sector to enhance new supply capacities of Southern African countries in the electrical sector. The project will strengthen new supply capacities of several developing countries by using innovative approaches to development and trade and organizational learning and information-sharing, thus making it a compelling business case.

The project will be executed by UNCTAD. Collaboration will be sought with Governments, UNDP and other United Nations agencies, and selected private-sector entities. The focus will be on two or three sub-regions or countries in each of the developing regions of Africa, Asia and Latin America and on three indicative sectors: electronics and electrical products, biofuels and information technology-enabled services.

Objective:

To strengthen, through innovation, networking, information-sharing, capacity-building and the effective participation of developing countries in selected dynamic and new sectors of international trade.

Expected accomplishments:

  • Increased understanding and dissemination of developing countries’ acquired knowledge and successful experiences to build new capacities for production and exports of dynamic and new products and services
  • Adoption of national/regional strategies to improve competitive supply capacity, exports, investment, market support conditions and trade facilitation measures for individual sectors
  • Establishment of effective public-private knowledge networks and partnerships to implement national/regional strategies to enhance participation of developing countries in dynamic and new sectors of world trade, including designing mechanisms to sustain such networks and partnerships.

Implementation status:

For the Lao PDR, a communication linkage was established with the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, with a view to formulating step-by-step action plans for enhancing the production and exports of green tea and organic vegetables. Based on the findings from the diagnostic study and the discussions at the national workshop, UNCTAD recommendations were presented to the Government of Lao PDR with regard to: (i) coordinating production and export promotion strategies among Government Ministries and agencies; and (ii) concrete actions to enhance/create Public-Private partnership for production and exports of green tea and organic vegetables.

For Peru, the analysis of matching Peruvian export capacity of certain products with the world Dynamic imports, on the basis of a product-market pairs. A solid communication linkage has been established with PromPeru, the export promotion agency of Peru, and discussed in depth on the areas that would require analytical inputs, technical assistance and policy recommendations from UNCTAD.

Discussions with various stakeholders were held (e.g. the PromPeru, Ministry of Economy, Ministry of Production, exporting firms, as well as Lima Officers of Korean Trade and Investment Promotion Agency and Japan External Trade Organization) with a view to identifying ways to link Peruvian fishery producers (anchovy) and importers/investment in the target market Korea.