A new World Trade Organization (WTO) publication launched on 19 January highlights that further support will be needed from the international community in the next decade to strengthen least-developed countries’ (LDC) participation in world trade.
While LDCs have benefited over the past ten years from greater market access opportunities, flexibilities in implementing WTO rules and trade-related technical assistance, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to even greater challenges for these countries, hitting their exports hard.
The report notes that LDCs’ participation in global trade can be strengthened by furthering preferential market access for LDC exports of goods and services. It also highlights the importance of longer timeframes for LDCs to implement WTO rules, including for trade-related aspects of intellectual property. Support from development partners will also be crucial to sustain the development efforts of economies graduating from LDC status.