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Trade facilitation

The WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) contains provisions for expediting the movement, release and clearance of goods, including goods in transit and sets out measures for effective cooperation between customs and other appropriate authorities on trade facilitation and customs compliance issues. It further contains provisions for technical assistance and capacity building in this area.

In reaffirming the commitments to strengthen the multilateral trading system, the Addis Agenda calls on WTO Members to fully and expeditiously implement the ministerial declarations and decisions agreed at the Ninth WTO Ministerial Conference, called the Bali Package. On 22 February 2017 WTO obtained the necessary number of acceptance instruments for the TFA to enter into force.

The speed of implementation of the TFA commitments and other trade-facilitating measures varies considerably across countries.

Developed economies have the highest implementation rate (78.5 per cent), while LDCs, LLDCs, and SIDS achieve implementation rates significantly below the global average implementation rate (between 40 and 50 per cent), indicating that these countries may need further technical assistance and capacity building support to help them bridge the implementation gap.