[List of members] [List of Partners] [List of Advisors]
Given the increasing complexity of the international trade environment, policy makers in the UNESCAP region are in need of more effective institutions able to deliver the research and analytical studies to make better decisions. In April 2004, developing countries in Asia and the Pacific expressed support for the establishment of a research network on trade to equip the region with a mechanism for enhancing the capacity of research institutions. This led to the creation of the Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ARTNeT), an open regional network composed of leading trade research institutions across the UNESCAP region, and supported by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Canada.
Since its launch, the Network has grown into a network of over 30 member research institutions from developing countries of the region. It is supported not only by ESCAP which provides the Network's Secretariat - and IDRC, Canada, but also UNDP, UNCTAD and the WTO, as core partners. A number of bilateral donors, are also providing financial support to the network - e.g., the Government of France and the Swiss Agency for Cooperation and Development have provided support for the ARTNeT Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) initiative. A comprehensive external evaluation report prepared by Mr. Supperamaniam Manickam, former Ambassador of Malaysia to the WTO, on ARTNeT Phase I (2004-2007) is available here. The external evaluation report for ARTNeT Phase II, prepared by Mr. Sailendra Narain and ARTNeT Secretariat's response to evaluation, are also available for viewing.
ARTNeT aims at increasing the amount of quality and relevant trade research in the region by harnessing the research capacity already available and developing additional capacity through regional team research projects, enhanced research dissemination mechanisms, increased interactions between policymakers and researchers, and specific capacity building activities catering to researchers and research institutions from least developed countries.
To achieve the long-term goal of enabling government policy makers to more effectively formulate trade policies ARTNeT has adopted a three-pronged strategy.
ARTNeT and its members aim to produce high quality research and analysis on trade and investment related issues. In Phase II, the ARTNeT research programme developed in close consultation with research institutions and policy makers, emphasizes the implementation of regional multi-institutions research studies under the following themes: (1) Trade, investment, and domestic policy coherence for inclusive growth, (2) Trade Facilitation (TF) and Development of Related Services Sectors, and (3) Multilateral Trade Liberalization and Regional integration.
ARTNeT research as well as members? research is disseminated through various means, including a dedicated website, an online regional database of trade-related publications, a working paper and a policy brief series, a newsletter and other publications. More importantly, ARTNET thematic consultative meetings provide both the research institutions and policy makers with an opportunity to exchange information, share ideas, and review and refine research findings.
- Capacity Building
As many of the countries in the region have yet to evolve trade-related research programmes, ARTNeT strives to build research capacity in the region, particularly in least developed countries. This is done through implementation of regional team-based research studies, research grants to junior researchers from least developed countries (LDC), organization of technical training workshops for trade research, and visiting fellowships to non-LDC institutions.
ARTNeT is an open network of research and academic institutions with a strong interest
in trade and investment policy and facilitation issues.
Institutions involved in the network are classified as ARTNeT
Members, Core Partners, and Associate Partners. Please consult
membership guidelines or the list of members
and partners for more
UNESCAP Trade and Investment Division, serves as the ARTNeT Secretariat. The ARTNeT Multi-Stakeholder Steering Committee (MSC) and Institutional Advisory Board (IAB) provide guidance and advice to the Secretariat during implementation [See Terms of Reference and composition of the MSC and the IAB and the latest presentations (1 and 2) by the Secretariat to the MSC]. Government focal points to ARTNeT [Terms of reference; List of focal points] facilitate collaboration between research institutions and Governments and ensure that that the ARTNeT research programme remains relevant to developing countries of the region.
UNESCAP, as an intergovernmental body and the regional branch of the United Nations in Asia-Pacific, provides the link between research institutions and policy makers at the regional level, through its well established communication and dissemination system, existing partnerships with organizations such as UNDP, WTO and UNCTAD (among others), and its experience in conducting and leading research and capacity building projects throughout the region using universally recognized principles of neutrality embodied in the UN rules.
For more information, please contact the
ARTNeT Secretariat at:
Trade Policy Section
Trade and Investment Division
United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)
|United Nations Building
Rajadamnern Nok Avenue
Bangkok 10200, Thailand
|Tel: +66-2 288 1422
Fax: +66-2 288 1027