A partnership with academia

Building knowledge for trade and development

Vi Quarterly Newsletter


Issue #38 - September 2013 - Welcome to the Vi quarterly newsletter



Two new members for the Vi - Country representation hits 50-mark
The Vi's sub-Saharan African and Asian representation grew this quarter as the University of Botswana (UB) and Nepal's Mid-western University (MU) joined UNCTAD's academic network in August.

University of Botswana

UB, the 18th institution to represent sub-Saharan Africa in the Vi, came to us thanks to the initiative of Khutsufalo Sekolokwane, a UB graduate currently at the Southern African Customs Union, who participated in the 2011 Vi workshop on trade and trade policy analysis and last year's online course on trade and poverty.

UB's Department of Economics, focal point of the cooperation with the Vi, offers a BA, MA, MPhil and PhD degrees in Economics, as well as an MA in Applied Economics. The Department's research topics include poverty, unemployment, and women empowerment; agriculture, environment and economic development; and globalization, privatization and trade. Staff also conducts research on agricultural and food security; industrial economics; resource and environmental economics; labour market, unemployment, poverty and gender; money, banking and finance; econometrics and Computable General Equilibrium modelling; international trade including exchange rates; and globalization and economic development.

Gaotlhobogwe R. Motlaleng, senior lecturer at the Department of Economics teaching courses on international finance and international trade and policies, has been appointed Vi member coordinator. His research focuses exchange rates and trade policy. Also joining are Zibanani Kahaka, responsible for courses on macroeconomics and microeconomics, and whose research covers trade policy and climate change; and Imogen Mogotsi, teacher of courses on international trade, international finance and development economics, and researcher in the areas of trade agreements and poverty reduction.

The university is ready to contribute to the Vi network through research and information sharing in areas such as foreign direct investment, trade and poverty, and the multilateral trading system. They hope that the Vi membership will contribute to the development of their training and research activities, as well as to staff and student exchanges.

Mid-western University

MU, Vi's second Asian LDC core university member, established contact in the fall of 2012 after former UNCTAD colleague, Giovanni Valensisi, suggested to MU's Prakash Sharma that the Vi could provide content for a planned graduate programme focusing on development topics.

MU offers a BA and MA in Development Economics, a BA and MA in International Relations, Bachelor's and Master's in Business Studies and in Business Administration, and an MA in International Cooperation and Development (MICD). The MICD, offered in cooperation with the University of Pavia (Italy), contains a number of courses touching on trade and development topics, such as those on quantitative methods; macroeconomics in the global economy; poverty, inequality and economic policies; finance for development; international trade and development; South-South cooperation; food security; and climate change.

Sharma, MICD programme director, will coordinate the cooperation with the Vi. He has a Master in Cooperation and Development Studies from the University of Pavia, and is responsible for courses on international cooperation, contemporary studies, and project management. Sharma will be supported by Suresh Pradhan, academic director of the MICD programme, and Lucia Russo, MICD's programme coordinator.

The university is ready to make available their course outlines and materials, organize and host workshops and training events, and facilitate and promote staff and student exchanges.

Mark Korir (pictured, far left), Head of the Department of Economics at Vi Kenyan affiliate member, Moi University

Government of Finland

Kenyan fellow develops Master's curriculum
Vi affiliate Kenyan member, Moi University, may soon have a new Master's in International Economics and Trade programme, as Department of Economics' Head, Mark Korir (pictured, far left), spent his six-week Vi fellowship gaining specific subject-matter insights and relevant references from UNCTAD experts as he developed the planned programme's curriculum.

Richard Kozul-Wright, of the Division on Globalization and Development Strategies, shared his expertise on globalization, regional integration and South-South cooperation; Elisabeth Tuerk and Kalman Kalotay, of the Division on Investment and Enterprise, provided valuable content on international investment; Martine Julsaint Kidane, of the Division on International Trade in Goods and Services, and Commodities, helped with the trade in services area; and Jan Hoffmann, of the Division on Technology and Logistics, offered assistance with trade logistics and facilitation.

"I was previously exposed to the narrow area of international economics and commodity trade," Korir said. "However, I have now been exposed to other critical subject areas - globalization, investment, facilitation and logistics, trade in services, and financial systems, among others, which are critical to international trade."

Vi Chief, Vlasta Macku, and Vi economist, Cristian Ugarte, guided Korir as he defined the target group for the programme and determined its positioning with regard to the needs of the country and a similar programme offered by the University of Nairobi. Also discussed were possible financial models for the programme, identification of experts to teach various courses, and the content of the programme itself - including the selection of courses, the structure and issues they could cover, and the readings that could be used to facilitate students' learning.

Elijah Manyara, Minister Counsellor at the Permanent Mission of Kenya, who also met with Korir and the Vi team, welcomed the project and stressed the importance of university programmes building knowledge and analytical skills on international economic -- and in particular trade -- issues, for the country.

Funded by the Government of Finland, Korir's fellowship covered the period of May 27 to July 6.

?	First Vi workshop for Kenya trains 22 on trade empirics

Government of Finland

First Vi workshop for Kenya trains 22 on trade empirics
A group of 22 lecturers and students from two Kenyan Virtual Institute member universities honed their skills in trade empirics August 6-9, during the first professional development workshop delivered by the Vi in the country. Funded by the Government of Finland, the workshop was hosted by Vi core member, the University of Nairobi's School of Economics, and included the participation of four lecturers from Vi affiliate member, Moi University.

Delivered by Vi economist, Cristian Ugarte, the workshop began with an introduction to Stata and its main functionalities, followed by a look at the theoretical foundations of the gravity model and linear panel data models. The two topics then came together as participants constructed a dataset for gravity modeling using Stata, and worked on an exercise analyzing the impact of regional trade agreements and membership in the WTO.

“I am involved in a research project on trade and tobacco in Africa and this training could not have come at a better time,” one of the participants said. “(I will use the knowledge from the workshop for) guiding students in their data analysis research, and in teaching international economics and trade,” added one of the participating lecturers.

All trainees gave high ratings to the workshop, stating that it had significantly enhanced their knowledge and skills in trade empirics and Stata.

Fourth Vi study tour for core Chinese member, the University of International Business and Economics

Chinese students take part in fourth Vi study tour for Beijing’s UIBE
A group of 28 students from core Chinese member, the University of International Business and Economics (UIBE) complemented their studies with lectures on current trends in international economics, business and law, during the fourth annual UIBE Vi study tour held September 16-20..

The 19-session training programme was delivered by experts from all UNCTAD divisions and Vi partner organizations, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the International Trade Centre (ITC) and the World Trade Organization (WTO).

“I have gained really useful knowledge during the study tour and expanded my views to a more global way of thinking,” said one of the students

The study tour also provided the students with the opportunity to discuss country-specific questions about trade negotiations with national representatives at the Permanent Mission of China in charge of UNCTAD and WTO matters.

.“China is playing more and more significant role in the world and we need to learn from the developed countries in order to make China one of them,” concluded another student.


IELPO awards scholarships to Vi academics
Thanks to the efforts of Vi Spanish core member coordinator, Ramon Torrent, the Universitat de Barcelona has once again awarded young Vi members scholarships for its Master of Laws in International Economic Law and Policy (IELPO) programme. Selected this year were alumni of Vi member universities in Ethiopia and Morocco.

The first scholarship went to Worku Gedefa Urgessa, a graduate of Vi core member, Addis Ababa University, and currently a lecturer at the school of law of Ethiopia's Ambo University. He says he has a strong desire to conduct interdisciplinary research connecting law to other areas of study, such as economics, philosophy and sociology. The second scholarship was awarded to Salma Ait Belhadj, a student in the Master's in International Trade and WTO at Vi Moroccan core member, Université Mohammed V - Souissi.

Although the Ethiopian candidate was unable to take advantage of the scholarship due to a lack of funding for living costs in Barcelona, "the Vi would like to thank our Spanish member for continuing to nurture the academic careers of the network's young members," said Vi Chief, Vlasta Macku.

Momodou Jatta (pictured, center)

Vi African members participate in UNCTAD regional course
Vi member academics gave top marks to the latest edition of UNCTAD's course on Key Issues on the International Economic Agenda, held July 15 to August 2 on the campus of Vi core member, the University of Mauritius.

"The course helped me to set things straight," writes Vi Cameroonian core coordinator, Henri Ngoa Tabi, of the Université de Yaoundé II. "As a teacher, I leave with elements that will be useful to my professional Master's students. As researcher, I got my share. Some of the ideas will allow us to help the government update the strategy for employment growth."

Also accepted into the course, primarily geared toward policymakers, were Vi core coordinator, Momodou Jatta (pictured, middle), of the University of the Gambia, and Moses Oduh, of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

"We were exposed to various key economic issues that are a challenge for Africa, and (discussed) how we can tackle these challenges in our various policy frameworks," writes Oduh. "Once more I must thank you and all those who were involved in the selection process."

Left to right: Vi Swiss core member coordinator, Pierre Sauvé, Prof. Dr. Hoang Van Chau, President of Vi core member, FTU, and Brigitte Bruhin, Deputy Country Director at the Swiss Cooperation Office

Swiss-Vietnamese member partnership engenders new Master’s
The Swiss-funded project involving three Vi members, and led by core university member, the World Trade Institute (WTI) in Bern, reached a major milestone May 22, when Vietnamese core member, the Foreign Trade University (FTU), launched its new Master’s Programme in International Trade Policy and Law (MITPL).

Developed by faculty members at FTU and WTI, the 18-month MITPL offers a multi-disciplinary focus on international economic governance. Taught in English, lectures are delivered by a global team of distinguished faculty, experienced professionals and leading legal and economic experts.

"With the active support and cooperation from WTI, FTU strongly believes that MITPL will equip its graduates with the skills and knowledge necessary to handle a variety of complex law, international policy, economics and political economy issues in a global context," said FTU president, Hoang Van Chau.

"The lack of general and specialized technical knowledge hinders informed decision-making by key stakeholders in trade policy formulation in Vietnam," said WTI Vi member coordinator, Pierre Sauvé. "With MITPL, students and young professionals will deepen their knowledge of the law, economics and political economy of trade and investment policy, issues at the very heart of global governance that are central to Vietnam’s continued insertion into world commerce."


Mukhisa Kituyi

UNCTAD welcomes new SG
Mukhisa Kituyi, former Minister of Trade and Industry of Kenya and alumnus of Vi core university member, the University of Nairobi, began his four-year tenure as Secretary General of UNCTAD September 1. His first order of business? Personally meet each and every one of the organization's hundreds of staff members.

"When meeting the Vi team, Mr. Kituyi made reference to our recent workshop for Kenya, and asked to learn more about the overall Vi programme," said Vi Chief, Vlasta Macku. "We hope to benefit from his academic and policymaking experience as the Vi continues to help its members increase the policy relevance of their teaching and research."

Kituyi began his undergraduate studies at the University of Nairobi and went on to obtain a Bachelor's in Political Science and International Relations from Uganda's Makerere University. His graduate and doctoral studies were completed at the University of Bergen, Norway. Prior to joining UNCTAD, Kituyi was Chief Executive of the Kenya Institute of Governance and a fellow in the Africa Growth Initiative at the Brookings Institution.

UNCTAD Virtual Institute

Vi research seminar - Join us!
Academics from 12 Vi member universities will present the findings of their current research projects during a three-day seminar to be held in Geneva October 9-11. Funded by the participants' own institutions, it is the first gathering of the membership since 2009.

The range of research topics is extensive, reflecting the diversity of the institutions and geographical regions represented. The session on development strategies will feature the work of members from Russia, Jordan and Brazil on Dutch disease and energy-driven diversification, trade in services and economic growth, and currency, liquidity and exchange rates. The session on the international economic regime will discuss the work of members from Morocco, Russia and France on the trade dispute settlement system and global climate governance.The session on enhancing export performance will hear from South African and West Indian members working on new product and service export opportunities, and extension services to improve trade in the Caribbean. The session on trade agreements will present the findings of members from Colombia, South Africa and Brazil on regional and bilateral trade agreements, and the effect of proximity on trade. The last session will focus on research into entrepreneurship in the Colombian creative economy.

All papers were peer-reviewed by fellow participants or guest reviewers: Jan Bohanes, of the Advisory Centre on WTO Law, Robert Hamwey, of UNCTAD, and Massimiliano La Marca, of the International Labour Organization.

Although all slots for presentations have been filled, Vi members are welcome to participate as observers. Please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you would like to attend.

UNCTAD Virtual Institute


Government of Finland

Scholarships available: Second edition of Vi online course on trade and poverty - Deadline: November 24
The Vi is now accepting applications from researchers and university lecturers from developing and transition countries for the second edition of its online course on trade and poverty analysis, scheduled for Feburary 3 to April 20. Part of the Vi project on trade and poverty funded by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs and the Government of Finland, the course will provide participants with the empirical tools needed to assess the impact of trade and trade-related policies on poverty and income distribution. In addition to strengthening teaching and research capacities in participants' countries, the course aims to support governments in the design of pro-poor trade policies conducive to the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals.

All selected participants will be exempt from course fees, and will receive the course CD/DVD including the Vi teaching material on trade and poverty, free-of-charge. As a hands-on technical course, the pedagogical approach emphasizes data manipulation and the use of econometric tools. Applicants must, therefore, have knowledge of STATA and trade theory and policy, as well as a Master's degree in Economics and excellent knowledge of English. Participants with passing grades in all course activities will receive a certificate of completion. The top 10 course graduates will receive a copy of the UNCTAD/Vi-WTO book, "A Practical Guide to Trade Policy Analysis."

Applications, including CV and letter of institutional support, must be submitted online no later than November 24.

UNCTAD Virtual Institute

Government of Finland

Tanzania UN delivering as One

Last quarter Vi workshops - Up to 5 places available
The Vi, with financial support from the Government of Finland, will deliver training on trade in services and on trade policy analysis to academics and policymakers in Mauritius and Senegal in the last quarter of the year.

The Vi workshop for Mauritius responds to a request by Vi core member, the University of Mauritius, for specialized training, particularly for lecturers in charge of WTO-related courses. Scheduled for 16-18 October, the workshop will be delivered by UNCTAD expert, Martine Julsaint, of UNCTAD's Division on International Trade in Goods and Services, and Commodities, and will take place on the campus of Vi core member, the University of Mauritius.

The workshop for Senegal will train professors and graduate students at Vi core member, Cheikh Anta Diop University, on the empirics of trade and the use of statistical software for trade analysis and model estimations. Scheduled for November 4-7 at Dakar, the training will be delivered in French by Vi economist, Cristian Ugarte. The university has agreed to accommodate up to five additional academics in the area. To apply, contact Vi member coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Closing the year is a Vi workshop on the empirics of trade for Tanzanian core member, the University of Dar es Salaam Business School. Funded by the Tanzania One UN Fund, the training is planned for the first week of December.

Université Mohammed V-Souissi

Vi Moroccan member announces conference and doctoral seminar (français)
La Chaire de l'OMC - Université Mohammed V-Souissi, avec le soutien de l'Organisation Mondiale du Commerce, organise le colloque, « Développement et Transformations structurelles et institutionnelles des économies nord africaines et méditerranéennes » à Rabat, Maroc, 14-15 novembre.

Un séminaire d'études doctorales ouvert à de jeunes chercheurs (doctorants ou étudiants à la sortie du master qui souhaitent débuter une thèse) travaillant soit sur la problématique du colloque, soit sur les pays méditerranéens, sera organisé le 16 novembre.

Droits d'inscription: 120 euros (individuel), 50 euros (étudiants), 180 euros (institution).


UNCTAD/UNITAR online course on trade-related development assistance
UNCTAD and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) are accepting applications from Vi members to participate in the six-week online course, Trade Dimension in United Nations Development Assistance Frameworks - UNDAFs, to be held October 7 to November 15.

The five-module course will cover: the role of trade and productive capacity in development strategies; linkages of trade with other dimensions of development; preconditions for the effective contribution of trade to developmental processes; UN vehicles for delivering trade-related assistance; UN integrated projects with trade components; and formulation of integrated UNDAF development programmes that take better account of the trade dimension.

For more information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

New Vi multimedia teaching resources

New multimedia resources on food security, communicating with policymakers
The Vi team has put together two new multimedia teaching resources based on UNCTAD expert presentations delivered during the recent Vi study tour for the University of the West Indies and Vi workshop on trade and poverty.

In Trade and food security: The good news, and the bad, Samuel Gayi, Head of UNCTAD's Special Unit on Commodities, introduces the topic of food security and its key dimensions, and explores the causes of the 2008 food crisis. After examining food security threats, such as competing uses of crops, skewed geographical distribution of food production and food waste, he looks at how trade can be both good and bad for food security, and proposes policy options to support the goal of making sufficient food available to all.

The second multimedia teaching resource, Informing national policy: How to communicate with policymakers?, features no-nonsense, practical tips from UNCTAD expert, Rashmi Banga, on sharing your research effectively and increasing the chances of its uptake by policymakers.


Vi/WTO trade policy analysis book now in Chinese

UNCTAD Vi/WTO book now available in Chinese
Vi affiliate university member, the Shanghai Institute of Foreign Trade (SIFT), has recently completed the translation into Chinese of "A Practical Guide to Trade Policy Analysis," a joint publication of the UNCTAD and the World Trade Organization published in June last year and based on the Vi's Teaching material on Trade Data Analysis.

The brainchild of Vi member coordinator, Lei Zhang, the translation and publication in China was funded by SIFT's WTO Chair, and the online version developed and hosted by the Vi. The project, in the works since the last quarter of 2012, also counted with the support of former Vi fellow, Hao Shao, of SIFT.

The book went off to the printers in August for a run of 2000 copies. It is expected that Chinese libraries will be the primary consumer of the publication, which will be sold at a small, non-profit price.



Trade and Development Report 2013

Trade and Development Report 2013 - Adjusting to the changing dynamic of the world economy
According to the latest edition of UNCTAD's Trade and Development Report (TDR), countries must change their development strategies to cope with what now appears to be a structural crisis of the global economy. Developed countries must address the fundamental causes of the crisis, in particular rising income inequality, the diminishing economic role of the State, the predominant role of a poorly regulated financial sector and an international system prone to global imbalances. Developing and transition economies, which are likely to face sluggish import demand for their goods as a result of a protracted period of slow growth in developed countries, need to consider adopting a more balanced growth strategy that gives a greater role to domestic and regional demand.

Rather than exclusively pursuing export-led growth, the TDR advocates a growth strategy with a greater role for domestic demand, which can be pursued by many countries simultaneously without causing adverse spillover effects on other countries and without inducing wage and tax competition. If many developing and transition economies were to move coordinately towards a more balanced growth strategy, their economies could become markets for each other, spurring regional and South-South trade, and further growth in all of them.

Adjusting to new patterns of demand also requires reliable and affordable long-term finance for productive investment. Economic policies should therefore aim at encouraging domestic investment of profits and influencing the behaviour of the banking system (including central banks) so that it more consistently allocates credit to productive economic activities.

Economic Development in Africa Report 2013

Economic Development in Africa Report 2013 - Intra-African Trade: Unlocking Private Sector Dynamism
Intra-African trade presents opportunities for sustained growth and development in Africa. It can help reduce vulnerability to global shocks, contribute to economic diversification, enhance export competitiveness and create employment. This potential was recognized by the African Union summit in January 2012 with a decision to boost intra-African trade and fast-track the establishment of a continental free trade area. In this context, UNCTAD's Economic Development in Africa Report 2013 explores ways to strengthen the private sector's contribution to this goal.

After reviewing facts on intra-African trade and highlighting distinctive features of Africa’s enterprise structure, the report analyzes the challenges posed by non-implementation of regional trade agreements, and reflects on ways of enhancing their implementation. It advocates "developmental regionalism," which places the building of productive capacities and domestic entrepreneurship at the heart of the policy agenda for boosting intra-African trade, instead of only focusing on the elimination of trade barriers.

Trade and Environment Review 2013

Trade and Environment Review 2013 - Wake up before it is too late: Make agriculture truly sustainable now for food security in a changing climate
"Continuing rural poverty, persistent hunger around the world, growing populations, and mounting environmental concerns must be treated as a collective crisis, and urgent and far-reaching action is needed before climate change begins to cause major disruptions to agriculture, especially in developing countries," is the message of UNCTAD's latest Trade and Environment Review (TER).

In this collection of articles, more than 50 international experts share their perspectives on various dimensions of the climate-change challenge for agriculture: the transformation of agriculture and livestock production for food and livelihood security and the roles of research and technology extension services, changes in land use, and international trade.

?	Non-Tariff Measures to Trade: Economic and Policy Issues for Developing Countries - Developing Countries in International Trade Studies

Non-Tariff Measures to Trade: Economic and Policy Issues for Developing Countries
This comprehensive study on the implications of Non-Tariff Measures (NTMs) for developing countries begins with an overview on the use and impact of NTMs, describing the various categories and their classification, and discussing their use, incidence and how they relate to traditional trade policies.

The study then takes up issues related to the analysis and quantification of their effects, summarizing the advantages and disadvantages of various quantitative tools, and providing a detailed review of the empirical literature. The discussion is not only methodological but provides an empirical assessment of the impact of different types of NTMs, and analyzes a number of case studies to provide policy recommendations and quantitative analysis with regard to several sectors, countries and types of NTMs.

According to the study, "NTMs overall restrictions on trade may be systematically biased, although unintentionally, against developing countries, and more so against low-income and least developed countries."


The Palestinian economy in East Jerusalem: Enduring annexation, isolation and disintegration
This UNCTAD report analyzes the effect of physical, political and economic segregation policies implemented in the occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) since 1967 on the economy of East Jerusalem.

The economic analysis is based on the city's growth record during the last two decades, elements affecting labour force, the evolution of its economic structure -- the share of the various economic sectors in output and employment -- and the identification of some of the reasons behind its weak investment record and obstacles to overall development.

The report concludes with recommendations for possible targeted policy interventions to revive East Jerusalem as the centre of Palestinian economic and cultural life.

The economics behind non-tariff measures: Theoretical insights and empirical evidence

The economics behind non-tariff measures: Theoretical insights and empirical evidence
This paper by frequent Vi contributor, Marco Fugazza, of UNCTAD's Division on International Trade in Goods and Services, and Commodities, is a review of empirical work on the impact of non-tariff measures (NTMs) with a particular focus on technical regulations. It also provides a simple theoretical framework for the analysis of the impact of NTMs on international trade.

Technical barriers to trade (TBT) and sanitary or phytosanitary (SPS) measures are the two broad categories of technical regulations and even if their aim is to guarantee a level of quality and safety standards for importer countries, their extensive use in international trade raises concerns for exports from developing countries. Indeed, technical regulations are imposed to half of the products traded between countries and their incidence has increased over time.

After presenting a theoretical model for the analysis of NTMs, the paper reviews the results of the different methodologies used to estimate ad valorem equivalents for technical regulations through price effects on traded goods. Finally, the author highlights that recent contributions, based on gravity model estimations including the evaluation of the protectionist aspect of these measures, represent an important step toward a more systematic quantification of the nature of technical regulations.

Market access, export performance and survival: Eevidence from Pperuvian firms

Market access, export performance and survival: Evidence from Peruvian firms
A contribution to the new area of international trade research using firm data, this paper, co-authored by our colleague, Marco Fugazza, and Alain McLaren from the University of Geneva, explores the effect of market access on firms' export performance and their survival on foreign markets.

The data used cover all Peruvian exporting firms between 2002 and 2008, a period during which Peru made particular efforts to enhance its integration into the global economy. The paper uses two indices to analyze the issue: one that summarizes the tariffs faced by exports, and the other one that measures the preferential margin at the bilateral level. Results show that more than market access conditions per se, it is market access conditions relative to those faced by competitors that significantly influence export performance and survival of firms. About a fifth of the increase of exports directed to MERCOSUR countries is due to improvement in such preference margins.

World Trade Report 2013: Factors shaping the future of world trade

World Trade Report 2013: Factors shaping the future of world trade
The 2013 edition of the WTO's World Trade Report (WTR) examines likely trends in world trade, and economic, social and political factors that could shape its future.

Beginning with an overview of economic and trade activity, highlighting chronological milestones, trends and possible scenarios, the report goes on to analyze fundamental forces shaping the future of international trade, including demography, investment, technology, availability of energy and other natural resources, transportation costs, and institutions. To conclude, the WTR looks at broader socio-economic factors, including social, environmental and macroeconomic concerns, and outlines the prospects for multilateral trade cooperation, identifying challenges faced by the WTO and the ways in which it could address them.

A Handbook on Negotiating Preferential Trade Agreements: Services

A handbook on negotiating preferential trade agreements: Services Liberalization
First in a series of handbooks on important issues involved in negotiations of preferential trade agreements, this UNESCAP publication provides a practical introduction for government officials and other stakeholders in developing countries tasked with preparing, conducting and implementing negotiations on trade and investment in services. Written by Vi Swiss core university member coordinator, Pierre Sauvé, and Simon Lacey, in cooperation with ARTNeT, the handbook explains the main steps to arrive at an agreement, make it enter into force and monitor its implementation.

Chapter one takes the reader through the various stages required to prepare for a negotiation, while chapter two explains the actual negotiation, addressing organizational and procedural issues, negotiating rules, as well as possible red lines and impasses. Given the numerous constraints facing developing countries, chapter three is specifically dedicated to opportunities to use Aid for Trade to improve the negotiating capacity and the management of market opening in developing countries, and to boost their export capacity. Chapter four focuses on the implementation of negotiated commitments, as well as monitoring and enforcement of preferential trade agreements. The authors frequently offer ideas and present country experiences, in particular relating to those countries that are well versed and successful in trade in services and related negotiations.

?	Supply chain perspectives and issues: A literature review

Supply chain perspectives and issues: A literature review
Internationally dispersed production networks have grown in prominence over recent decades, marking a shift from the traditional model of trade where countries exchanged finished products, to a qualitatively different model where successive stages of the production process are located in different countries. However, the phenomenon only started to be addressed in research in a more systematic manner after 2000.

This recent review of literature on global value chains (GVCs) prepared by the World Trade and Organization and the Fung Global Institute, maps the existing body of knowledge in this area. The 12-chapter book identifies the defining features of GVCs from the economic and business perspectives, and takes on specific issues in the GVC literature, in particular the relationships between value chains and offshoring and outsourcing; upgrading and development; risk; small- and medium-sized enterprises; services; trade in value-added; business models; sustainability; trade policy; and trade finance. All chapters contain sections outlining possible future developments in their specifics areas. Chapters 3-12 also provide an analysis of a number of empirical studies on each specific area covered.

The Future of Trade: The Challenges of Convergence

The Future of Trade: The Challenges of Convergence
Based on the conclusions of a WTO-convened non-state stakeholders panel on the challenges facing trade and the international trading system in the 21st century, this publication begins with a discussion of the contribution of trade to growth, development and prosperity, and the challenges of managing jobless growth, high unemployment, poverty, inequality, the environment and sustainable development, as well as the role of trade and investment in this context. The second chapter examines certain transformational factors shaping trade in recent years and in years to come: increasing globalization; geographical shifts in patterns of growth; trade and investment; technological advances; the rise of international value chains; the proliferation of preferential trade agreements; and the growing influence of non-tariff measures. The last chapter contains a number of recommendations for possible action with regard to the international trading system. These recommendations touch upon the principles that are at the foundation of the system, the processes of international trade negotiations, and specific issues linked to existing WTO provisions and other issues of relevance to the WTO.

I-TIP Services

I-TIP Services - http://i-tip.wto.org/services/
Trade in services is an increasingly important area for which little information is publicly available. To help bridge this gap, the WTO and the World Bank partnered to create and maintain a set of linked databases on services trade which are accessible through the I-TIP Services portal.

The data are presented in four modules covering: (a) members' commitments under the WTO's General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS); (b) commitments on trade in services in regional trade agreements; (c) members' applied measures affecting trade in services; and (d) services statistics. The joint database covers various sectors, such as financial, transportation, tourism, retail, telecommunications, and business services, including law and accounting, in more than 100 countries.

Universidad EAFIT

Colombian member offers scholarship for MIB - Deadline: November 1
The Master of International Business (MIB) program at Universidad EAFIT in Medellín, Colombia, will grant one merit-based scholarship to begin studies January 2014 to a candidate recommended by an academic member of the UNCTAD Virtual Institute. The scholarship will be awarded based on previous academic results, work/life experience, English language certification, clarity in the proposed research project, and diversity enhancement objectives of the university. Covering tuition fees only, the scholarship will be awarded on a semester-by-semester basis, upon satisfactory completion of the previous semester.

EAFIT is working with ICETEX, a Colombian government scholarship organization to provide scholarships covering living costs of international students in Colombia. Students interested in a full scholarship covering tuition (EAFIT) and living costs (ICETEX) should also apply to http://ww.icetex.gov.co (in Spanish).

Applications for the MIB will be accepted until November 1. For more information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Vacancy: UNRISD Research coordinator
The United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) seeks a Research Coordinator for its work programme on gender and development. Building on prior and ongoing research, s/he will lead the development of new research projects, identifying critical areas of concern for the UN system within the framework of the overall UNRISD research strategy.

The ideal candidate will have proven experience in conceptualizing, developing and implementing research programmes, with field research experience in developing countries. S/he will have a record of high-quality research outputs and experience in communicating research to diverse audiences, particularly in policy communities. S/he should be familiar with UNRISD research; some knowledge of the UN system would be an advantage.

The post requires a minimum of five years of experience in development research at an academic or research institution and a Master’s degree in social science, with a focus on gender and development. A PhD is strongly desirable.

Applications must be submitted online by October 13.


Call for papers: Colombian conference
The Latin American Chapter of the Academy of International Business (AIB-LAT) has issued a call for papers in preparation for its fourth annual meeting, "Innovation, Geography, and Internationalization in Latin America," to be held March 20-22 on the campus of Vi core Colombian member, Universidad EAFIT, in Medellín.

The conference will promote research findings and theoretical developments related to the geographical aspects of innovation and internationalization in the Latin American context. Papers addressing issues related to how factors such as cities, country boundaries, and various distance types (e.g., cultural, administrative, geographic, economic, etc.) promote and/or inhibit innovation and internationalization must be submitted online by October 15.

For more information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Call for articles: International Development Bank journal
Integration & Trade Journal is now accepting articles examining the patterns and determinants of the internationalization of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC).

Papers addressing the following themes: importance of SMEs in trade flows and foreign direct investment in LAC; internationalization of SMEs and its driving factors in LAC; and the policy perspective in LAC; should be submitted to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ';document.getElementById('cloak1877e7ab0945ec210cf2941843d39c6e').innerHTML += ''+addy_text1877e7ab0945ec210cf2941843d39c6e+'<\/a>'; no later than October 15. Selected articles will be published in the December issue.

ASEAN-CANADA Research Partnership

Fellowships ASEAN region
The ASEAN-Canada Research Partnership, with the support of the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Canada, invites applications for the 2013–2014 ASEAN-Canada Junior Fellowships on Natural Resource Management for Sustainable Growth. Eleven fellowships will be offered to successful applicants from the 10 ASEAN countries or Canada. Candidates must possess a minimum of a Master’s degree and have no more than 5 years of working experience.

Research should address the challenge of improving systems for managing natural resources to allow sustainable economic growth and meet growing energy needs in the ASEAN region. Collaborative proposals among ASEAN nationals or that incorporate creative methodologies are particularly encouraged.

Fellowships will start in January, with fieldwork and a first draft of the paper to be completed by June 2014. Applications may be submitted to Cheryl Lim (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) until October 31.

Manfred Kouty, PhD

Another young Vi academic thrives in the network
Vi Cameroonian member, Manfred Kouty, of Université de Yaounde II, successfully defended his PhD in international economics thesis, "Trade liberalization and wage inequality in developing countries," in July.

His analysis shows that trade openness reduces inter-industry wage inequality in low-income developing countries and increases it in higher-income developing countries. In addition, his thesis finds that trade liberalization causes intra-industry wage inequality, as firms involved in international trade pay higher wages than those which are not.

"This thesis would not have been possible without the support of the Virtual Institute," Kouty writes. "In particular the 2011 course on tools and methods for trade and trade policy analysis, and the 2012 online course on trade and poverty (which provided knowledge on the use of Stata for the construction of non-parametric regressions)."

Kouty's immediate plans include obtaining a post-doctoral scholarship and publishing his research in recognized journals. Ultimately, he hopes to make a career at an international organization like the WTO, UNCTAD or the World Bank.

Bradly J. Condon, Vi member coordinator at ITAM, Mexico

Mexican Vi academic publishes new book
Vi core Mexican member coordinator Bradly J. Condon's co-authored book, "The Role of Climate Change in Global Economic Governance," was recently published by Oxford University Press.

The book addresses the growing number of legal and economic issues that arise with respect to climate change, combining analysis from the economic, financial, and legal perspectives. It examines climate change issues affecting global economic governance, assesses financial and insurance concerns, and explores how securitization can be applied to risks related to a changing environment. In addition, the book addresses a wide range of global economic issues, including the impact of climate change on food production, the "polluter pays" principle, the micro and macroeconomics of climate change, and the principle of sustainable development.

Condon is currently on sabbatical at the University of New South Wales, Australia, and the University of Victoria, Canada, where he is researching and teaching courses on climate change and international economic law.

New Vi staff (from left): Mireille Velaquez, Eveliina Kauppinen, Florence Hudry

New Vi staff
We are pleased to welcome our fall intern, Mireille Velazquez (pictured, left), a Master's in Development Studies student at Swiss affiliate university member, the Graduate Institute, Geneva. While at the Vi, she will assist in the review of trade-related papers and teaching materials, update new publications to our digital library, and help with videoconferences and other Vi capacity-building activities.

Also joining us is Florence Hudry, formerly of UNCTAD's Division on Technology and Logistics, where her work included administration, desktop publishing and coordination of technical assistance and capacity-building activities. At the Vi, she will manage our videoconferences and the administration of fellowships, workshops and other services for our members.

We are also very lucky to have our former intern, Eveliina Kauppinen, back in the team to help with a range of activities, including fellowships, study tours, workshops and other Vi training events. She will also help develop multimedia teaching materials and assist in the finalization of Vi training materials and members' research papers.

The Virtual Institute welcomes any feedback, both positive and critical, about the Vi Newsletter. Is it clear? Are the links helpful? Do they work? Equally, if there is any aspect of UNCTAD's work that you would like to see reported in the newsletter, please make suggestions and we will try to cover it. We would also welcome any news items from members about their current or planned activities. Send all comments and document requests to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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The UNCTAD Virtual Institute on Trade and Development is a capacity-building and networking programme aiming to strengthen the capacities of academic institutions in developing countries and countries with economies in transition to teach and research trade issues, and to foster links between research and policymaking.


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