IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Building Poor Countries' Trade Capacity


  • John Whalley


This is a background paper prepared for an informal expert meeting of the Development Assistance Committee of the OECD. It discusses technical assistance on trade for the least developed and poorer countries and tries to explore alternative partnership approaches for building new trade capacity. It focuses on trade policy more than on trade promotion strategies. The paper identifies four different types of technical assistance: 1. Raising the awareness of key policy makers and actors both of how trade policy operates globally, and what the options are. 2. Help with the implementation of multilaterally or regionally agreed trade arrangements. 3. Help to deal with export related implements in foreign markets. 4. Enhancement of negotiating capability, both multilaterally and regionally. It emphasizes how a ranking across these types of assistance needs to be informed by a sense of the trade situation for these countries. The pattern of poorer country trade has been changing in recent years, with sharp export growth in countries such as Bangladesh, and also some African countries (such as Uganda). This is beginning to generate trade conflicts with OECD countries in areas such as textiles and apparel (MEA) and even antidumping. Poorer countries are also increasingly becoming involved in outsourcing trade (relocation of assembly operations to a poorer country by a large OECD company, possibly in an export processing zone); and trade between poorer countries and other developing countries is growing more rapidly. After many years of stagnant trade growth, poorer country trade is now growing at rates which compare to those of all developing countries. Special opportunities seem to be present in services trade (growing globally at rates higher than goods trade), and (in the future) electronic commerce.

Suggested Citation

  • John Whalley, 1999. "Building Poor Countries' Trade Capacity," CSGR Working papers series 25/99, Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation (CSGR), University of Warwick.
  • Handle: RePEc:wck:wckewp:25/99

    Download full text from publisher

    To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
    1. Check below whether another version of this item is available online.
    2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
    3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.

    More about this item


    Developing countries; trade; capacity building.;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wck:wckewp:25/99. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Thomas Krichel). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.