WTO and World Bank Joint Publication

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

The Director General of WTO Roberto Azevêdo and the Chief Economist of the World Bank Pinelopi Goldberg launched the WTO/World Bank co-publication "Trade and Poverty Reduction – New evidence of impacts in developing countries" during the first economic research conference of the WTO held on 11 December 2018 at the WTO. In his speech, Director General Roberto Azevêdo said that the two organizations are united in a common purpose to contribute in the process of economic development of poor nations and to promote trade as a means of poverty reduction. WCP team member- Robert Teh, Chief of Economic Modelling and Quantitative Analysis Unit and WCP Chairs of Benin,South Africa and Tunisa made valuable contributions to the publication.
The report looks at the challenges the poorest countries face in joining global trade flows. It provides five inter-related and complementary areas of policy that can be considered by countries and the international community in implementing this approach which helps to maximize gains of trade opportunities for the poor – lower trade costs for deeper integration of markets, improve the enabling environment, intensify the poverty impact of integration policies, manage and mitigate risks faced by extreme poor and better data and analysis to improve policy.
The report also highlights the critical role of the WTO in underpinning an open and inclusive global trading system while also supporting trade facilitation. The rules-based global trading system has been essential in reducing the risks faced by the poor from opaque and unpredictable trade policies and by creating a stable trading environment to support job-creating investment, both domestic and foreign, in trade related activities. Similarly, the Trade Facilitation Agreement recognizes the need to support countries in making the most of trade opportunities. Various efforts are now underway, including by the World Bank Group, to ensure that this commitment is delivered.
The book provides a framework for policy analysis and action for policymakers stating the need to recognize that many poor people in different economic sectors face common challenges. Finally, the report concludes by addressing that the World Bank Group and the WTO both have a strong role in promoting coherence to support multilateral governance of the trading system, and the implementation of trade policies in a way that delivers the greatest possible benefits for the poor.