Aid for Trade at a Glance 2017

Promoting Trade, Inclusiveness and Connectivity for Sustainable Development

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This edition of Aid for Trade at a Glance focuses on trade connectivity, which is critical for economic growth, inclusiveness and sustainable development. Physical connectivity enables the movement of goods and services to local, regional and global markets. It is closely intertwined with digital connectivity which is vital in today’s trade environment. Yet, the Internet remains inaccessible for 3.9 billion people globally, many of whom live in the least developed countries.

This report builds on the analysis of trade costs and extends it into the digital domain, reflecting the changing nature of trade. It seeks to identify ways to support developing countries – and notably the least developed – in realising the gains from trade. It reviews action being taken by a broad range of stakeholders to promote connectivity for sustainable development, including by governments, their development partners and by the private sector. One message that emerges strongly is that participation in e-commerce requires much more than a simple internet connection.

Chapters were prepared by the World Bank, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the International Trade Centre (ITC), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the World Trade Organisation (WTO), The International Telecommunication Union (ITU), and Business for eTrade Development.

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Financing connectivity: aid for trade priorities, policies and programmes

This chapter looks at aid-for-trade priorities, policies and programmes, particularly in the areas of physical and digital connectivity. It provides an overview of the financing for development agenda, highlighting the critical role of official development assistance (ODA) for the least developed countries, as well as its catalytic role in higher-income developing countries. The chapter analyses 2002-15 aggregate aid-for-trade disbursements (around USD 300 billion) and takes a detailed look at aid-for-trade programmes that are building physical and digital connectivity. It offers a brief overview of academic findings on the results of aid-for-trade investments, as well as recent evaluations of donor aid-for-trade strategies and programmes. Case stories show how aid for trade is helping countries improve their physical and digital connectivity, turning trade opportunities into trade flows. Finally, the chapter provides an analysis of aid-for-trade commitments in 2015, closing with a series of conclusion.



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