- The Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation supports trade reform in developing and least developed countries (LDCs), bringing government and business together in public-private partnership to make cross-border trade simpler, faster, and more cost-effective.
- The Alliance has now successfully delivered 14 projects, supporting developing countries and LDCs in fulfilling their commitments under the World Trade Organization’s Trade Facilitation Agreement.
- By the end of 2022, Alliance initiatives had achieved an initial 10-times return on investment, saving US$ 60 million in seven project countries.
- The Alliance has engaged 41 global business Partners and 704 local MSMEs in its activities, resulting in US$ 11 million in-kind private sector contributions.
The impact on improving trade efficiencies.
The Alliance supports countries in implementing the World Trade Organization’s Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA), which entered into force in February 2017. In voting for the landmark Agreement, WTO members realized its potential for driving inclusive economic growth while also recognizing that some countries would require help in implementing all its provisions.
By cutting red tape, emphasizing digitalization, and delivering other best practices, Alliance projects empower businesses to trade more easily. More seamless, transparent, predictable processes also allow countries to better deploy scarce resources in safeguarding their borders and their people. The Trade Facilitation Alliance has increased global trade by US$ 231 billion between 2017-2019 according to the WTO.
Micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), many of them women-owned or led, stand to benefit most from trade facilitation. For example, in theory e-commerce enables any business with the right product at the right price to sell anywhere in the world, but most MSMEs remain excluded from this burgeoning US$ 6.3 trillion marketplace that now accounts for around 20% of total retail sales.
Recognising the added barriers to global trade faced by women – who are more likely to be involved in MSMEs unable to access global trade networks – gender mainstreaming is core to every Alliance project.