Trade negotiation dialogue and capacity building: applying the PXA Framework, World Trade Organization

Mexico - 1 September 2023

Trade topics: Trade Policy, Gender and Trade, Economic Growth, Gender Inequality

The increasing trend of the inclusion of gender equality and women’s economic empowerment concerns in the negotiation of trade agreements creates a need to strengthen informed dialogue between the public and private sectors. Trade negotiators are often not aware of the specific barriers faced by women in their various economic roles, and as a result, face a challenge in promoting provisions that will successfully address these barriers. At the same time, the private sector is often not equipped to communicate its needs to a policy audience and identify the ways in which it can inform the negotiation processes with its information and experience. This gap can be bridged with the help of an institutionalized and structured dialogue between public and private, and international organizations can provide the required institutional and structural support. The public–private coordination and exchange can also help countries – particularly developing countries – overcome the capacity gap in trade negotiations as they can benefit from the inputs coming from the private sector and experts. In this chapter, the authors propose a first-of-its-kind framework that can be employed to foster public–private dialogue in the context of integrating gender considerations in the negotiation and implementation of trade agreements. This new methodology, known as the PXA Framework, calls for a facilitated workshop divided into three phases: (i) progress and problems; (ii) eXperience; and (iii) application. Each phase of the framework has a dedicated focus area, aim and a set of strategies to engage and foster exchange between both trade negotiators and private sector representatives.