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Development at the local level & the domestic enabling environment for trade

The Addis Agenda acknowledges the importance of policy coherence on trade at all levels for maximizing trade’s contribution to sustainable development. At the national level, it asserts the importance to strengthen domestic enabling environments and implement policies conducive to increasing trade’s contribution to inclusive growth and sustainable development. The commitment calls for policy actions that are complementary to trade policy changes, with a view to supporting households and businesses to capture economic opportunities arising from trade.

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.

Aid for Trade

WTO members launched the Aid for Trade initiative at the Sixth Ministerial Conference in Hong Kong in 2005.
Aid for trade focuses on supporting developing countries, particularly the least-developed, in building trade capacity, enhancing their infrastructure and improving their ability to benefit from trade opening opportunities.

Trade and the sustainable development goals

International trade growth can be an economic foundation for sustainable development. However the Addis Agenda, notes that trade growth must be inclusive and consistent with sustainable development.

Progress on implementation of the Bali and Nairobi outcomes

 

In December 2013, WTO members successfully negotiated the 'Bali Package' which included steps on agriculture, food security, support for the least-developed countries, and the Trade Facilitation Agreement. In December 2015, at the Ministerial Conference in Nairobi, another package of major negotiated outcomes was adopted. 

Access to affordable medicines

A global aim is to provide access to affordable medicines on a sustainable basis in developing countries. The past decade has seen a strong policy emphasis on public health and access to medicines in the WTO, including making needed medicines available − especially anti-retroviral drugs to combat HIV/AIDS − at lower prices, enhancing international funding and creating an additional pathway for access to medicines.

Agriculture and fisheries

Agriculture is a sector that is distorted by subsidies and high trade barriers, but directly affecting access to food, fibers for clothing and other materials, and the livelihoods of farmers around the world. WTO members have taken steps to address these distortions impeding a fairer agricultural trading system and adopted in 2015 a historic decision to abolish agricultural export subsidies and to set rules for other forms of farm export support.