Bilateral trade agreements (BTAs) and regional trade agreements (RTAs) have multiplied rapidly worldwide to become a prominent feature of today's trading environment. While RTAs have become increasingly powerful in liberalizing trade in goods and services, BTAs are flourishing between developed countries, and between developed and developing countries.
The following two videos, based on a short course for Geneva-based delegates, aim to explain the proliferation of these types of trade arrangements.
Bonapas Onguglo, of UNCTAD's Division on International Trade in Goods and Services and Commodities (DITC), gives an overview of trade agreements, their pros and cons, and their place in the multilateral trade system. In addition, Onguglo takes a look at North-South agreements and their results in term of policy changes in the developing world.
Taisuke Ito, also of DITC, takes a closer look at North-South trade agreements from the developing country point of view: how to address market opening commitments, and how to explore new market opportunities.