Aid for trade

Aid for trade


We track aid-for-trade flows and share good practice so that developing countries can capitalise on the opportunities of international trade.

Promoting effective aid for trade

Trade promotes economic growth, alleviates poverty and helps countries reach their development goals. However, developing countries – in particular the least developed – face difficulties in making trade happen and turning trade into economic growth. As part of the joint WTO/OECD Aid for Trade Initiative, we help unlock the potential of developing countries to benefit from trade, and foster a transparent and mutually beneficial relationship between them and donors to bring about aid for trade that effectively fosters economic growth and reduces poverty.  

Evidence from our monitoring surveys comprehensively demonstrates that aid for trade is working: developing countries are recognising and taking concrete steps towards mainstreaming trade in their national and regional development strategies. In turn, donors are responding with more resources. We look at aid-for-trade efforts and make recommendations on their design, sequencing and implementation to make them more effective.

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Monitoring aid for trade

The third global review of aid-for-trade took place in July 2011 following the joint OECD/WTO survey of the impact and outcomes of aid for trade. This bi-annual survey collects data from donors and developing countries based on a logical framework designed to promote dialogue and encourage all key actors to honour commitments, meet local needs, improve effectiveness and reinforce mutual accountability.

Like our previous 2009 survey, it examines trends and developments, presents a comprehensive analysis of donor and partner country engagement, and provides at-a-glance data on more than 80 countries participating in the survey.

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Aid for trade statistics

Most aid for trade is used to help developing countries overcome infrastructure bottlenecks. In 2008, infrastructure projects accounted for 53% of aid for trade, followed by progammes to improve productive capacity (43%). Trade-related technical assistance accounted for just 4% of total aid-for-trade flows.

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