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Building knowledge for trade and development

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        Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals Through Consumer Protection (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 32 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies, Trade Related Capacity Building

        The publication Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals through Consumer Protection aims to provide policymakers and enforcers with a basis for reflection on the positive impacts that protecting consumers bears in promoting a more inclusive and sustainable development. This approach will help them improve the consumer protection framework while also devising and implementing development strategies. Equally, it underscores the close link between Agenda 2030 and the United Nations Guidelines for Consumer Protection. This publication begins with a general overview of the contributions made by consumer policies in meeting the Sustainable Development Goals. It then focuses on two issues that are of special relevance to this matter: sustainable consumption related to Goal 12 on Responsible Consumption and Production; and consumer protection in health-care delivery, according to Goal 3 on Good Health and Well-being.

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        Economic Development in Africa Report 2017 - Tourism for Transformative and Inclusive Growth (English)
        Also available in French
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 206 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies

        At a time when the continent is building its productive capacities, deepening regional integration and pursuing economic diversification, tourism in Africa continues to grow. The report suggests that to better harness the potential of the tourism sector to contribute to inclusive growth, structural transformation and achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, Africa should adopt policies that strengthen intersectoral linkages, boost intraregional tourism and promote peace.

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        from Regional Economic Communities to a Continental Free Trade Area - Strategic Tools to Assist Negotiators and Agricultural Policy Design in Africa (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 54 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies, Trade Negotiations, Trade Related Capacity Building

        This report seeks to enhance knowledge among policymakers, experts and private sector stakeholders on essential policies and measures for establishing the CFTA and boost regional supply chains in not only agricultural commodities but also processed food products. This has been done through network analysis, which allows visualizing which country has competitive advantage over others in each trade agreement or regional context, as well as highlight overlapping regional agreements and identify trade hubs within Africa. It then carries out a specific analysis of agricultural products identified in the Abuja declaration and in other literature sources as being of interest. The ultimate purpose of this work is to inform African policy-makers with strategic tools to assist trade negotiations and agricultural policy design. Its focus is on the eight Regional Economic Communities that exist in Africa, as they do not only constitute key building blocks for economic integration, but are also important actors working in collaboration with the AU in ensuring peace and stability in their regions.

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        from Regional Economic Communities to a Continental Free Trade Area - Strategic Tools to Assist Negotiators and Agricultural Policy Design in Africa (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 81 pages
        Categories: Regional and Bilateral Trade Agreements, Trade Policy Analysis and Trade Data Sources

        This handbook provides a general explanation of the preferential tariffs of India for the least developed countries, to allow officials and users responsible or involved in duty-free quota-free issues to gain a better understanding of the Duty Free Tariff Preference Scheme of India. It is meant to serve as a general guide and is not intended to provide legal advice

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        G20 Policies and Export Performance of Least Developed Countries (English)
        Discussion paper by Nicita, Alessandro and Seiermann, Julia/UNCTAD, 2017, 34 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies, Policy Reviews and Briefs, Trade Negotiations

        This volume of the Policy Issues in International Trade and Commodities Research Study Series provides an overview and analysis of G20 trade policies, in particular tariffs and non-tariff measures, and provides suggestions on how they could be improved to increase the export competitiveness of LDCs. It finds that G20 tariffs remain restrictive in several sectors of importance for LDCs. More importantly, the results indicate that the G20 countries’ regulatory frameworks and the corresponding non-tariff measures (NTMs) alter relative competitiveness to the advantage of exporters that are capable of efficient compliance with NTMs, therefore penalizing exports originating in LDCs. The paper concludes with recommendations and suggests progress in Aid for Trade initiatives and increases in technical assistance programmes, both on bilateral and multilateral levels will help minimize LDCs' costs of compliance with NTMs and facilitate the integration of LDCs in the global economy.

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        Handbook on Duty-Free and Quota-Free Market Access and Rules of Origin for Least Developed Countries – Part I : Quad Countries (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 82 pages
        Categories: WTO Issues/Multilateral Trading System

        The present handbook reviews the progress made to implement the Hong Kong (China) decision until the Nairobi WTO Ministerial of 2015 and subsequent changes that individual QUAD countries have made to their schemes till 31 December 2017. Part I of this handbook focuses on the special provisions in favour of LDCs and related rules of origin, as contained in the GSP schemes of the Quad countries, namely Canada, those of the European Union Japan and the United States.

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        Information Economy Report 2017 - Digitalization, Trade and Development (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 129 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies, Science and Technology

        The analysis contained in the Information Economy Report 2017: Digitalization, Trade and Development proposes ways in which the international community can reduce inequality, enable the benefits of digitalization to reach all people and ensure that no one is left behind by the evolving digital economy.

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        Information Economy Report 2017 - Overview (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 17 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies, Science and Technology

        The analysis contained in the Information Economy Report 2017: Digitalization, Trade and Development proposes ways in which the international community can reduce inequality, enable the benefits of digitalization to reach all people and ensure that no one is left behind by the evolving digital economy.

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        The Least Developed Countries Report 2017: Transformational Energy Access (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 192 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies

        This report focuses on transformational energy access for the LDCs, where 62 per cent of people have no access to electricity, compared with 10 per cent across other developing countries. Today, the majority of people worldwide who lack access to electricity live in LDCs — a proportion that has grown steadily from less than one third in 1990. It finds that “energy for all” in LDCs requires more than access to energy for basic household needs. It requires that access to energy in LDCs also serves productive capacities directly, by powering the structural transformation of LDC economies and the development of more productive, modern activities and sectors with adequate and reliable energy supplies. Structural transformation, in turn, has a role in increasing energy access, by generating sufficient additional demand for electricity for productive uses to make viable the infrastructure investments required for universal access more broadly. Yet strengthening this energy-transformation nexus remains a massive challenge, given that installed generating capacity per person in LDCs is barely one twelfth of that even in other developing countries, and one fiftieth of that in developed countries.

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        The Least Developed Countries Report 2017: Transformational Energy Access - Overview (English)
        Also available in Arabic, Chinese, Spanish, French, Russian
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 26 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies

        This report focuses on transformational energy access for the LDCs, where 62 per cent of people have no access to electricity, compared with 10 per cent across other developing countries. Today, the majority of people worldwide who lack access to electricity live in LDCs — a proportion that has grown steadily from less than one third in 1990. It finds that “energy for all” in LDCs requires more than access to energy for basic household needs. It requires that access to energy in LDCs also serves productive capacities directly, by powering the structural transformation of LDC economies and the development of more productive, modern activities and sectors with adequate and reliable energy supplies. Structural transformation, in turn, has a role in increasing energy access, by generating sufficient additional demand for electricity for productive uses to make viable the infrastructure investments required for universal access more broadly. Yet strengthening this energy-transformation nexus remains a massive challenge, given that installed generating capacity per person in LDCs is barely one twelfth of that even in other developing countries, and one fiftieth of that in developed countries.

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        Manual on Consumer Protection (English)
        Manual by UNCTAD, 2017, 151 pages
        Categories: International Economic Law, Trade Related Capacity Building

        The UNCTAD Manual on Consumer Protection 2017 edition is the first comprehensive international reference in this field, aiming to support developing countries and economies in transition in their choice of policies and providing practical tools to assist policy makers in enhancing capacities while implementing the recently revised United Nations Guidelines for Consumer Protection. With this manual, UNCTAD is contributing to spreading good practices and enhancing the capacities of developing countries and economies in transition to step up the protection of their consumers.

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        New Innovation Approaches to Support the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 51 pages
        Categories: Science and Technology

        This study presents several new and emerging innovation approaches, highlights how they may contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and discusses some of the policy implications in harnessing such approaches. It provides an overview of particular issues and considerations that need to be taken into account in coming years to maximize the contribution of new innovation approaches to sustainable development.

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        Port Industry Survey on Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 66 pages
        Categories: Trade and Environment

        The report is comprised of a survey sample which collectively handle more than 16 % of global seaborne trade and can be considered as representative. Although the majority of respondents had been impacted by weather/climate related events, including by extremes, the study revealed important gaps in terms of relevant information available to seaports of all sizes and across regions, with implications for effective climate risk assessment and adaptation planning.

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        Rethinking Maritime Cabotage for Improved Connectivity (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 42 pages
        Categories: Trade Related Capacity Building

        This report analyses and discusses various considerations relating to maritime cabotage and the ways in which these can influence the liner shipping connectivity of developing countries, to assist policy makers in identifying and analysing relevant options that could help leverage maritime cabotage in support of enhanced liner connectivity levels.

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        Review of Maritime Transport 2017 (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 130 pages
        Categories: Trade Policy Analysis and Trade Data Sources

        The Review of Maritime Transport 2017 presents key developments in the world economy and international trade and related impacts on shipping demand and supply, and freight and charter markets in 2016 and early 2017, as well as seaports and the regulatory and legal framework. In addition, this year’s Review features a special chapter on maritime transport connectivity, reflecting the prominence of physical and electronic connectivity as a priority area in the trade and development policy agenda.

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        Road Safety - Considerations in Support of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 55 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies

        The report concentrates on the relevant international regulatory framework, highlights the potential relevance of implementing existing conventions and other international legal instruments in the field of road safety, and overall, underlines the importance of a supportive legal and regulatory framework as a means for improving the achievement of the sustainable development goals. It highlights a number of worldwide international legal instruments that aim to facilitate international road traffic by means of adoption of uniform road traffic rules, documents, signs and signals, construction and technical inspection of vehicles, road infrastructure, driving times and rest periods for professional drivers, and safe transport of dangerous goods and hazardous materials. Their implementation would bring safer mobility and behavior of road users, safer roads and safer vehicles. The report presents an overview of developing countries membership to these worldwide instruments, explains their legally binding nature among States that become Parties to them, and encourages their wide adoption and full application, in order to advance the swift implementation of targets related to road safety.

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        The Role of Science, Technology and Innovation in Ensuring Food Security by 2030 (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 55 pages
        Categories: Science and Technology

        The report provides an introduction to the challenge of ensuring food security, highlighting the geography of food insecurity, specific socioeconomic, environmental and political challenges that exacerbate food insecurity, and the role of the Sustainable Development Goals in ensuring "Zero Hunger" by 2030. It discusses how various scientific and technological applications can address the four dimensions of food security, namely availability, access, use/utilization and stability. The report also explores how countries can reimagine their food systems as innovation systems with attention to the building of local innovative capabilities, enabling infrastructure for agricultural innovation, developing coherent policies and strengthening knowledge flows to facilitate technology dissemination. Finally, it presents policy considerations and strategic recommendations for national Governments, the private sector, agricultural research institutions and other stakeholders.

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        Scaling Up Finance for the Sustainable Development Goals - Experimenting with Models of Multilateral Development Banking (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 28 pages
        Categories: Finance for Development, Investment

        This report discusses some of the new modalities MDBs have been adopting or considering for adoption to relax their lending constraints. It explores, in particular, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) model for scaling up as a new experiment that may provide significant sums of development finance, as well as inject new ideas for operational improvements in other banks. It focuses on AIIB’s articles of agreement and argues that such articles give the bank a potential institutional mechanism to become an important intermediary in channeling sizeable amounts of official (but also private) resources to development-oriented projects around the world.

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        Services and Structural Transformation for Development (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 102 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies

        This publication reflects the deliberations and results of the fifth session of the multi-year expert meeting on trade, services and development on services, structural transformation and inclusive development. Together with the multi-year expert meeting, this publication is part of UNCTAD’s overall toolbox to assist countries in developing regulatory and institutional frameworks to allow harvesting the benefits of services for economic transformation and development. The Global Services Forum, also a part of this toolbox on services, is another important platform to share best practices and form partnerships in trade in services. UNCTAD has also developed country surveys, case studies and dedicated research. Services Policy Reviews, another central element of this toolbox, provide support to policymakers and regulators in assessing the potential of services productive capacities and trade and the robustness of regulations and institutions. This allows identifying constraints for the development of the services economy and trade and also practical solutions and policy options for best-fit practices to improve services performance. Services Policy Reviews draw on UNCTAD’s longstanding experience of more than 20 years supporting the national assessment of services. This publication also draws from the results of this toolbox with a view to assist developing and least-developed countries to pursue their development objectives by strengthening their services economy and trade.

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        Tool Box for Policy Coherence in Access to Medicines and Local Pharmaceutical Production (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 67 pages
        Categories: Macroeconomic Policy

        The present document seeks to provide interested governments with an overview of policy tools that may be considered to create a framework conducive for promoting local pharmaceutical production and access to medicines. As the promotion of local pharmaceutical production depends on the coordination of various areas of policy, such as drug regulation, research and development, investment, trade and intellectual property, the Tool Box emphasizes the importance of ensuring coherence among policies that at first sight appear unrelated to each other. It seeks to assist policy makers in understanding the cross cutting nature of promoting local production. The Tool Box provides a brief presentation of the most relevant policy tools in this regard. The Tool Box does not attempt to resolve the question of desirability of local production as compared to the importation of medicines. It is addressed to those governments that have made the policy decision to promote local manufacturing and that wish to prepare a framework for sustainable production and, to the greatest possible extent, increased access to medicines.

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        Towards E-Commerce Legal Harmonization in the Caribbean (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 53 pages
        Categories: Policy Reviews and Briefs

        This publication provides up-to-date information on the legal framework of Caribbean countries following the Regional Workshop on E-Commerce Legislation Harmonization in the Caribbean held from 29 September to 2 October 2015. The report examines the legal and regulatory framework for e-commerce in 10 countries: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Costa Rica, Cuba, El Salvador, Jamaica, Santa Lucia, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago. It examines progress made by the countries in regard to electronic transactions/electronic signatures, online protection of consumers, protection of personal data, industrial and intellectual property, domain names, cybercrime, security of information and pending legislation and challenges.

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        Trade and Development Report 2017: Beyond Austerity: Towards a Global New Deal (English)
        Also available in Spanish
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 200 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies

        This report argues that now is the ideal time to crowd in private investment with the help of a concerted fiscal push – a global new deal – to get the growth engines revving again, and at the same time help rebalance economies and societies that, after three decades of hyperglobalization, are seriously out of kilter. However, in today’s world of mobile finance and liberalized economic policies, no country can do this on its own without risking capital flight, a currency collapse and the threat of a deflationary spiral. What is needed, therefore, is a globally coordinated strategy of expansion led by increased public expenditures, with all countries being offered the opportunity of benefiting from a simultaneous boost to their domestic and external markets. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed to by all members of the United Nations two years ago provide the political impetus for this much-needed shift towards global macroeconomic policy coordination. The report calls for more exacting and encompassing policy measures to address global and national asymmetries in resource mobilization, technological know-how, market power and political influence caused by hyperglobalization that have generated exclusionary outcomes, and will perpetuate them if no action is taken. It argues that, with the appropriate combination of resources, policies and reforms, the international community has the tools available to galvanize the requisite investment push needed to achieve the ambitions of the SDGs and promote sustainable and inclusive outcomes at both global and national levels.

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        Trade and Development Report 2017: Beyond Austerity: Towards a Global New Deal - Overview (English)
        Also available in Russian, French, Spanish, Chinese, Arabic
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 33 pages
        Categories: Globalization and Development Strategies

        This report argues that now is the ideal time to crowd in private investment with the help of a concerted fiscal push – a global new deal – to get the growth engines revving again, and at the same time help rebalance economies and societies that, after three decades of hyperglobalization, are seriously out of kilter. However, in today’s world of mobile finance and liberalized economic policies, no country can do this on its own without risking capital flight, a currency collapse and the threat of a deflationary spiral. What is needed, therefore, is a globally coordinated strategy of expansion led by increased public expenditures, with all countries being offered the opportunity of benefiting from a simultaneous boost to their domestic and external markets. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed to by all members of the United Nations two years ago provide the political impetus for this much-needed shift towards global macroeconomic policy coordination. The report calls for more exacting and encompassing policy measures to address global and national asymmetries in resource mobilization, technological know-how, market power and political influence caused by hyperglobalization that have generated exclusionary outcomes, and will perpetuate them if no action is taken. It argues that, with the appropriate combination of resources, policies and reforms, the international community has the tools available to galvanize the requisite investment push needed to achieve the ambitions of the SDGs and promote sustainable and inclusive outcomes at both global and national levels.

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        Trade and Transport Facilitation Monitoring Mechanism (Ttfmm) in Bangladesh- Baseline Study (English)
        Report by Tengfei Wang, Mohammad Farhad, 2017, 77 pages
        Categories: Trade Facilitation

        As the key outcome of the baseline study of Trade and Transport Facilitation Monitoring Mechanism (TTFMM) in Bangladesh, the current synthesis report is derived from a series of studies carried out by the same project team and is targeted for policy makers, governmental officials, and the general public. Given the nature of the baseline study, the current report is aimed to not only report current trade facilitation in Bangladesh but also to lay a foundation for future studies and the establishment of long-term sustainable TTFMM. Accordingly, this report covers topics such as the importance of trade facilitation, the crucial role of TTFMM for continued improvement of trade facilitation, the key methodology for data collection called Business Process Analysis Plus (BPA+), and the rationale for defining the scope of monitoring.

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        World Investment Report 2017 - Investment and the Digital Economy (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 252 pages
        Categories: Investment

        In 2016, global flows of foreign direct investment fell by about 2 per cent, to $1.75 trillion. Investment in developing countries declined even more, by 14 per cent, and flows to LDCs and structurally weak economies remain volatile and low. These developments are troublesome, especially considering the enormous investment needs associated with the Sustainable Development Goals, detailed in UNCTAD’s Action Plan for Investment in the SDGs. Progress on sustainable development – and lasting peace – requires more investment in basic infrastructure, energy, water and sanitation, climate change mitigation, health and education, as well as investment in productive capacity to generate jobs and income growth. Now more than ever it is important to ensure that the global policy environment remains conducive to investment in sustainable development. UNCTAD plays an important role in this, by providing guidance on national and international investment policy regimes. Its Investment Policy Framework and Roadmap for Reform of International Investment Agreements have been used by more than 130 countries in formulating a new generation of investment policies. This year’s World Investment Report builds on that track record and presents policy advice on how to deal with close to 3,000 old-generation investment treaties.

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        World Investment Report 2017 - Overview (English)
        Report by UNCTAD, 2017, 56 pages
        Categories: Investment

        In 2016, global flows of foreign direct investment fell by about 2 per cent, to $1.75 trillion. Investment in developing countries declined even more, by 14 per cent, and flows to LDCs and structurally weak economies remain volatile and low. These developments are troublesome, especially considering the enormous investment needs associated with the Sustainable Development Goals, detailed in UNCTAD’s Action Plan for Investment in the SDGs. Progress on sustainable development – and lasting peace – requires more investment in basic infrastructure, energy, water and sanitation, climate change mitigation, health and education, as well as investment in productive capacity to generate jobs and income growth. Now more than ever it is important to ensure that the global policy environment remains conducive to investment in sustainable development. UNCTAD plays an important role in this, by providing guidance on national and international investment policy regimes. Its Investment Policy Framework and Roadmap for Reform of International Investment Agreements have been used by more than 130 countries in formulating a new generation of investment policies. This year’s World Investment Report builds on that track record and presents policy advice on how to deal with close to 3,000 old-generation investment treaties.

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