This paper examines how freedom of transit and transit facilitation are addressed in trade and transport (as well as transit-specific) agreements in the ESCAP region. The objective is to identify good practices and understand the extent to which existing agreements meet the transit facilitation provisions set out in the draft text of the WTO trade facilitation agreement (TFA).
Edited by Ravi Ratnayake, Rajan Sudesh Ratna, Martina Francesca Ferracane and Yann Duval.
In the post-crisis world, new drivers of growth are required to drive further reductions in poverty. This new book from the Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ARTNeT) examines the role of trade facilitation measures in lowering barriers to trade and raising incomes. In addition to a review of relevant literature and theoretical findings, empirical case studies are presented from across the region including: Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Thailand, and China.
The present document is based on the forthcoming Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report 2013 (henceforth the Report), which is the main substantive document prepared for the third session of the Committee on Trade and Investment. The Report comprises two parts. In the first part, there is a focus on trends and developments in trade in merchandise and commercial services, foreign direct investment flows, performance in trade facilitation, and reliance on preferential policies and trade agreements from an Asia-Pacific perspective.
ESCAP focuses on a number of areas of economic and social development in Asia and the Pacific. One of these is trade and investment – a vital engine for growth and integration. Recent decades have seen an enormous expansion in trade and investment flows in the Asia-Pacific region. Regional economies are increasingly part of global value chains. This has helped foster the economic dynamism that has lifted many from poverty and spread prosperity more widely. At the same time, however, too many individuals and communities remain excluded from the benefits of trade and investment.
Trade has the potential to contribute to economic growth and to more and better jobs. Whether trade contributes to growth that is inclusive, in the sense that all people can contribute to and benefit from growth triggered by trade, is likely to depend on country specificities including institutional pre-conditions and policies applied in domains other than trade. This paper identifies specific challenges for making trade inclusive and identifies ways for dealing with them.
This book, co-published by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), provides guidance for the implementation of trade facilitation measures and reforms in Asia and the Pacific. It attempts to bridge the gaps among policy makers, practitioners, and economists by outlining operational guidance on how to assess the status of trade facilitation, what measures and reforms are necessary, and how to implement them at the national and regional levels.
The fact that the Asia-Pacific region hosts both the most and least efficient economies in conducting international trade transactions is generally well-known. However, information on the actual implementation of specific trade facilitation reforms in the Asia-Pacific developing economies is generally lacking.
This Working Paper presents Asian Single Window background and evolution; a description of what we mean by national versus regional single window; an update on Member States’ National Single Window (NSW) status; an overview of Asian Single Window (ASW) technical, legal aspects; an assessment of institutional and technical aspects of the Asian Single Window work; potential benefits from the crossborder exchange of data using the Asian Single Window; incremental benefits from Asian Single Window; challenges to Asian Single Window implementation; and conclusions.
The Asia-Pacific Trade and Investment Report (APTIR) is a recurrent publication prepared by the Trade and Investment Division. It aims to deepen understanding of regional trends and developments in trade and investment; emerging issues in trade, investment and trade facilitation policies; and impacts of these policies on countries’ abilities to meet the challenges of achieving inclusive and sustainable development. APTIR 2012 focuses on trends and developments in the economies of Asia and the Pacific in their post-recovery from the 2008-2009 crisis and trade collapse.
Agriculture remains the backbone of most Asia-Pacific developing economies and approximately 50% of the Asian working population is employed in the agricultural sector. In view of the export potential of agricultural products in the region, it is urgent to reduce trade costs in this sector, particularly since they are typically twice as high as those for manufactured goods. Agricultural trade costs within each of the different Asian subregions and country groups are not found to differ sharply, particularly when tariff costs are excluded.