UNCTAD/ESCAP- ARTNeT Capacity Building Workshop on “Non-Tariff Measures: economic assessment and policy options for development”

3 Jul 2018 to 6 Jul 2018
Bangkok, Thailand

Non-tariff measures (NTMs) are policy measures other than tariffs that can potentially have an economic effect on international trade in goods. They cover measures such as sanitary and phytosanitary standards and technical barriers to trade that aim to protect human, animal and plant life as well as the environment. They are necessary instruments to achieve social and environmental objectives. However, such measures can become barriers to trade hampering economic development opportunities. Evidence indicates that NTMs can be three to four times more restrictive than tariffs and are the main contributors to trade costs.

During the first two days, this workshop will provide participants with a better understanding of the evolving role of NTMs in international trade. In particular, the workshop will first illustrate how NTMs affect the policy space of governments to pursue social and economic development. Next, the workshop will provide an overview of the methods for assessing the implications of NTMs for international trade and economic development. The workshop will also present a number of case studies that analyse the implications of various forms of NTMs for developing countries’ trade.

In day 3 of the workshop, the participants will be introduced to R and learn how to use it to analyse NTMs, and their impact on trade and trade costs. R is a language and environment for statistical computing and graphics. R is not only a powerful and flexible environment in which to implement statistical techniques; it is also a free software, which runs on a wide variety of platforms and similar systems, such as UNIX, Windows and MacOS.

In the final day, participants will use World Bank’s SMART modelling tool to conduct partial equilibrium analysis. The last session of the day will introduce the participants to input/output analysis to examine the effects of trade policy on overall economy.