Trade is a critical component of the development strategies of LDCs. However, in 2017 LDCs’ share in world merchandise exports remained under 1 per cent and their share of global exports of commercial services in 2017 was 0.6 per cent (WTO Trade Statistical Review, 2018).

The international community has committed to supporting the integration of LDCs into the multilateral trading system and increasing their participation in world markets. Trade-related international support measures include preferential market access for goods, preferential market access for services and service suppliers, special treatment regarding obligations under WTO rules and certain regional agreements, and technical assistance and capacity-building.

Trade-related international support measures for LDCs

Preferential market access for goods

Merchandise exports from LDCs benefit from duty free, quota free market access and from more favourable rules of origin (see also "Basis for preferential treatment...

Preferential market access for services and service suppliers

The main LDC-specific market access preferences in services are those granted under the decision adopted by WTO Members in 2011 known as the “services...

Special treatment under WTO rules

LDCs that are members of the WTO benefit from special considerations in their implementation of WTO agreements. Special and differential treatment (S&D) provisions for...

Special treatment under regional agreements

Certain regional trade agreements contain special provisions for LDCs, including longer or delayed implementation periods, more favourable rules of origin, and others (click on...

Trade-related technical assistance and capacity-building

A number of mechanisms are in place to support LDCs through technical assistance and capacity-building related to trade. Please click on the links below...

LDC Trade - News and analysis

EU launches public consultation on new GSP

The EU has launched the public consultation phase in the process of review of is Generalised System of Preferences.  The process is open until...

Trade in Africa: tralac guides on the AfCFTA and Trade in the Digital Economy

tralac (Trade Law Centre) is a public benefit organisation based in the Western Cape region of South Africa which develops technical expertise and capacity...

EU to withdraw part of tariff preferences to Cambodia under EBA

On 12 February 2012, the European Commission announced its decision to withdraw part of the tariff preferences granted to Cambodia under the EBA scheme "due...

Change in US list of developing and least developed countries used to determine standards...

10 February 2020. The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) has issued a notice updating the list of countries it designates as...

New on the EIF’s Trade4Development: FDI, Chad’s export diversification, training trade policy leaders in...

"How home country measures can promote foreign direct investment in poor economies", Rodrigo Polanco, January 7, 2020 "Chad aiming for export diversification, and with that...