International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development
International Environment House 2 Chemin de Balexert 7-9 1219 Châtelaine Geneva Switzerland
Phone: +41 22 917 84 92 Fax: +41 22 917 80 93 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Aid for Trade
Relative to merchandise goods, services have received less attention from economists and policymakers. This is starting to change. Recent initiatives have gathered services experts to discuss how trade policy can best promote the contribution of services to growth and development (ICTSD), or have provided capacity building support for LDC delegates regarding services challenges and negotiations (ITC). Increasingly, the potential of the services sector as a driver of economic growth in developing countries is being recognised. Additionally, services trade can play an important role for sustainable development, including poverty reduction and economic empowerment of women; key objectives in the UN's emerging Post-2015 Development Agenda.
A rapidly advancing body of research illustrates the point that in addition to customary market access barriers, issues such as network infrastructure and domestic regulation add significantly to trade costs for service suppliers. An important step to realizing the untapped potential of services was taken in February 2015 at the high-level meeting of the WTO Services Council to operationalise the LDC Services Waiver. The meeting sent a clear indication of the willingness of the trading partners of LDCs to provide preferences to LDC services and service suppliers. Against this backdrop, this session will highlight the opportunities for LDCs to penetrate commercial services markets by increasing supply side capacity and addressing barriers to services trade. Based on concrete examples, the session will focus on some of the key challenges faced by LDC-based companies and explore possible services trade facilitating solutions as well as support by investors and aid for trade to enable steady growth of services sectors and improve export performance of LDCs to advance sustainable development objectives.
Attending this event requires access to the WTO's Fifth Global Review of Aid for Trade. Register here.