New report on national trade facilitation bodies in the world

18 February 2015

​The report is based on the analysis of fifty trade facilitation bodies and provides a first-hand set of recommendations and policy-oriented conclusions aimed at assisting those countries that are looking to set up or strengthen their national trade facilitation committees.

With the signature of the World Trade Organization Trade Facilitation Agreement, countries have committed to creating or maintaining a national trade facilitation committee.

In this context, this UNCTAD publication, based on an in-depth analysis of 50 trade facilitation bodies, could not be timelier. It provides the first quantitative analysis of existing national trade facilitation bodies and a first-hand set of recommendations extracted from the experiences of participating stakeholders. The study provides policy-oriented conclusions aimed at assisting those countries that are looking to set up or strengthen their national trade facilitation working groups.

The study shows that, regardless of the type of body, the biggest challenge for trade facilitation working groups is their sustainability. There is no one determining element, but many factors might have an impact on the sustainability of a group. The relative importance of each element depends on the administrative culture of each country. However, analysis shows that the level of development of a country is the most influential factor on the sustainability of a group. The type of body and geographical region may also be determining elements.

With an interactive and user-friendly interface, UNCTAD's latest version of the online repository of national trade facilitation bodies presents information from trade facilitation platforms in over 80 countries and also assists UNCTAD member States in creating or strengthening trade facilitation bodies through useful information about country cases from different geographical regions on the establishment and management of trade facilitation bodies.

Trade Facilitation Bodies around the world
 

For over 40 years, UNCTAD has supported national trade facilitation bodies in least developed and developing countries with technical assistance and capacity building. UNCTAD's Trade Facilitation Section, Trade Logistics Branch, Division on Technology and Logistics continues to provide support in this field, in close collaboration with other development partners, notably the UNECE and ITC. Countries interested in technical assistance or capacity building activities in this field are invited to contact: TFbodies@unctad.org