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Development Account Projects

Strengthening the capacity of developing and transition economies to link to global supply chains through the reduction of trade obstacles

Background:

Global Supply Chains are a dominant feature of today's international trade. They are the primary conduit through which multinational corporations source the inputs for manufacturing from around the world and distribute final products. They depend critically on free and unencumbered flow of goods across borders, with a minimum of red tape, simplified trade procedures, and predictable and low transaction costs.

This work will contribute to reduce the cost and complexity of international trade, increase export competitiveness, and reduce corruption at the border. Such benefits are especially important for exporters, and particularly for SMEs – often led by women - for whom the relative cost of trade procedures is high and reduce the competitiveness of their products on the international markets. Benefits will accrue also to Government agencies as it will lead to more effective control procedures and to improved revenue collection, which will allow resource allocation to other areas, such as trade security

This project involving all five Regional Commissions will support joint work for the development of the above mentioned common approach to Trade Facilitation (TF) and its implementation at the national level in all five regions.

The project will be executed over 30 months. It relies on the active participation of regional/national public and private entities, as a necessary condition to build a sustainable capacity for the detection of trade obstacles, the formulation of trade facilitation policies and regulations, the adoption and implementation of trade facilitation measures in line with the ongoing negotiations within the WTO Trade Facilitation Negotiations and at the World Customs Organization.

The project will build on the extensive experience of the UNECE and other Regional Commissions in implementing joint projects on trade facilitation and electronic business. In particular, it will draw on the experience of their long-term cooperation under the UN Development Account 4th Tranche project Interregional partnership for promoting trade as an engine for growth through knowledge management and information and communication technologies, the UN Development Account 5th Tranche project Capacity Building in Support of Trade Integration with Emphasis on Integrated Trade Information Flow Management and Trade Facilitation in Central Asia and UN Development Account 6th Tranche project Enhancing trade efficiency of landlocked least developed countries, countries in transition and transit countries through the implementation of single window facilities.

Objective:

The overall objective of this project is to strengthen the capacity of Developing and Transition Economies from all five regional areas (Europe, Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, Western Asia) to link to global supply chains through the reduction of trade obstacles.

Expected accomplishments:

  • Increased knowledge by policy makers & managers of techniques to detect regulatory, procedural, organizational barriers to trade and of international standards and best practices to address them
  • Enhanced capacity by policy makers & managers to formulate and implement trade facilitation policies, measures and instruments for linking to global supply chain, in compliance with the ongoing WTO negotiations on trade facilitation.
  • Improved coordination at inter/intra regional level among key institutions for trade facilitation & improved dialogue with the business community.

Implementation status:

The growing awareness  of the importance of trade facilitation measures and standards as tools for enhancing enterprises participation to global supply chains, and especially SMEs from developing and transition economies, is reflected in  strong demand for guidance and training on such measures and standards in all regions of the world. Project activities, and particularly the 1st Global Trade Facilitation Conference (Geneva, December 2011) jointly organized by the five UN Regional Commissions (RCs), are providing key national players with policy recommendations and tools for identifying and removing regulatory and procedural obstacles to trade and enhancing information exchange among trade partners, including Business Process Analysis methodologies and the evolutionary model for Single Windows, Port Community Systems. These have already been applied in on-going technical assistance projects in the ECE region.