This publication examines the impact of non-tariff measures (NTMs) on trade in the Asia-Pacific region. As tariffs on traded goods have fallen on average over recent years, non-tariff measures have emerged as one of the principal obstacles to trade. In recent years there has been a proliferation of new NTMs in Asia-Pacific economies, including in developing countries. This proliferation of NTMs may be disadvantageous for developing economies in general, and least developed countries in particular.
This issue of the Trade Insights series provides analysis of notifications submitted as part of the preparation for the implementation under the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement. Fifteen economies in the Asia-Pacific region have already submitted Category A notifications, i.e., the list of substantive provisions they have either already implemented or are committed to implement by the time the Agreement enters into force.
International trade in agricultural and food products is more complex than trade in manufacturing – trade regulations are stricter, paperwork is more cumbersome and logistics are more complex. These elements are mainly required for ensuring food safety for consumers. Detailed information on traded goods alongside the movement of goods in a supply chain is critically important for food safety. Various actors need to exchange information in the complex process of importing and exporting agrifood products.
This brief provides a summary of the TIR system and introduces the most important attributes of the future eTIR system. It highlights the fact that, for many countries worldwide including those in the Asia-Pacific region, the TIR system is an important tool for international transit and transport facilitation. It also illustrates how, by incorporating modern ICT technologies, the eTIR system will further enhance transit and transport facilitation while further securing government revenues.
The Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report (APTIR) is a recurrent publication prepared by the Trade and Investment Division of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific. It provides information on and independent analyses of trends and developments in: (a) intra- and inter-regional trade in goods and services; (b) foreign direct investment; (c) trade facilitation measures; (d) trade policy measures; and (e) preferential trade policies and agreements.
There is a pressing need for the countries in the Asia-Pacific region to establish their own sustainable mechanism to monitor the effectiveness of trade and transport facilitation reforms and measures and identify solutions to streamline and optimize trade and transport process. Although existing global trade facilitation performance surveys and databases provide useful information on benchmarking and raise awareness, they do not provide sufficiently detailed information to develop or update national trade and transport facilitation action plans.
Countries that implement trade facilitation reforms and enhance trade efficiency and connectivity are generally expected to attract more foreign direct investments. This paper is a first attempt to quantify the potential impact of trade facilitation on FDI flows. Using a unique bilateral dataset on FDI flows covering both OECD and developing economies in Asia and the Pacific, we estimate gravity models of FDI featuring relevant trade costs and trade facilitation indicators.
This regional study consists of four coordinated country studies of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal, conducted on three regional corridors offering a detailed picture of the business processes associated with importing and/or exporting selected goods from or to other countries within the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) Program. Relevant procedures were identified and mapped using a common methodology outlined in the UNNExT Business Process Analysis Guide to Simplify Trade Procedures.
The Trade Facilitation Agreement adopted by the WTO member countries at the Bali Ministerial Conference in December 2013 highlights the importance of trade facilitation for international trade and the global economy. This paper provides a unique set of data on the progress made by 29 countries in Asia and the Pacific in implementing various trade facilitation and paperless trade measures in 2013/14, as well as estimates of the benefits from moving forward with implementation.
This study aimed at identifying key factors affecting SME participation in direct export and international production networks (IPNs), both globally and in Asia and the Pacific. A global dataset of firm-level data from developing countries was analyzed to identify the main obstacles to establishment and operation of direct and indirect small and medium size exporters. Logit models of SME export and IPN participation revealed the importance of several trade facilitation and related factors.