The Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Program countries are mostly landlocked and exhibit the following characteristics: (i) limited integration to global value chains, (ii) lower level of regional integration, (iii) narrow range of export commodities and trading partners, (iv) relatively low value-add processing thus difficult to perform upward value migration, and (v) systematic impediments that result in ‘friction’ for cross-border movement of goods. These challenges could be attributed to both trade policy and facilitation impediments, resulting in friction when goods move across borders. Restrictions imposed due to trade tariffs, vehicle specifications, SPS standards and documentary compliance increase the time and cost to ship items. Border-crossing procedures that are cumbersome, non-transparent and under-equipped with technologies and tools are equivalent to adding significant distance in the supply chain. Thus, despite physical proximity between an origin and destination, the time and cost to transport the goods could still be comparatively higher.

Evidence shows great progress in CAREC trade and transport facilitation in the last 10 years. Customs and border management adopted more risk management measures, streamlined border control procedures, and strived towards greater data sharing among CAREC neighbors. National single windows were adopted or under consideration. More CAREC countries entered into WTO agreements, while others became observers. Moreover, the container express train from East Asia to Europe was a significant development that shortened the economic distance, offering a transport mode much cheaper than air and much faster than ocean.  

The CAREC initiative Corridor Performance Measurement and Monitoring (CPMM) has observed the development and provided empirical evidence of the region’s transport and trade facilitation for the past decade. It is an empirical tool designed to assess the efficiency of the CAREC six priority transport corridors which link the region’s key economic hubs to each other and connect landlocked CAREC countries to Eurasian and global markets. Over the years, CPMM time and cost data proved beneficial in assessing and measuring the efficiency of the CAREC corridors through its reports and various studies citing CPMM data and findings.


The Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) East Asia Department is organizing a conference to be held in August 2022. The overall objective of the conference is to launch a study that identifies significant trade facilitation initiatives and development in CAREC countries, with evidence from the CAREC Corridor Performance Measurement and Monitoring (CPMM) data. The conference also aims to present selected studies that employ CPMM data and demonstrate how it can be used for policy formulation in the region and for deepening academic research in relevant areas.

Target participants

  • Policymakers
  • Academics
  • Transport and freight professional
  • High level officials of developing member countries
  • The wider interested public

Resource speakers

Moderator: Ms. Zulfia Karimova, Principal Regional Cooperation Specialist, East Asia Department (EARD), ADB

Opening Remarks
Ms. Teresa Kho, Director General, EARD, ADB
Mr. Yevgeniy Zhukov, Director General, Central and West Asia Department, ADB

Session 1
Trade Facilitation in CAREC: A 10-year CPMM Perspective

The study identifies significant trade facilitation initiatives and development in CAREC countries, with evidence from the CAREC Corridor Performance Measurement and Monitoring (CPMM) data. The study also highlights recommendations and forward-looking insights that address impediments and gaps. The study marks the ten years of implementation of the CPMM mechanism and underscores its value in influencing investment decisionmaking and in assessing the impact of policy implementation.

  • Ms. Zulfia Karimova, Principal Regional Cooperation Specialist, EARD, ADB
  • Mr. Max Ee, CPMM Consultant

CPMM Success Stories: Case of Pakistan

  • Mr. Ilhom Abdulloev, Research and Knowledge Connectivity Specialist, CAREC

Session 2
Presentations: Call for Research Proposals

Following a call for research proposals that employ the CPMM database on topics that include, but are not limited to, trade, regional cooperation and integration, and global value chains, selected studies will show how CPMM data can be used for policy formulation in the region and for deepening academic research in relevant areas. (10 minutes each presenter)

Moderator: Mr. Iskandar Abdullaev, Deputy Director 2, CAREC Institute

Analysis of the Impact of Trade Costs on exports of final and intermediate goods at micro
and macro sectoral level in Central Asia

  • Presentation: Ms. Alfinura Sharafeyeva, Adjunct Fellow, School of Economicsand Public Policy, University of Adelaide
  • Discussant: Mr. Peter Rosenkranz, Financial Sector Specialist, EAPF, EARD

The effects of lockdowns on time to clear goods at the border of the CAREC countries
during the COVID-19 pandemic

  • Presentation: Mr. Kijin Kim, Senior Economist, Regional Cooperation and Integration Division (ERCI), Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department (ERCD), ADB
  • Mr. Jerome Abesamis, Economic Analyst (Consultant), ERCD
  • Discussant: Ms. Lilia Aleksanyan, Economist, Regional Cooperation and Operations Coordination Division, CWRD

Trade Facilitation, Infrastructure, and International Trade in Central Asian Countries

  • Presentation: Mr. Kamalbek Karymshakov, Vice-Rector, Associate Professor, Kyrgyz-Turkish Manas University Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic
  • Discussant: Mr. Jules Hugot, Economist, Macroeconomics Research Division, ERCD

Geographical Proximity and Trade Impacts in the CAREC region

  • Presentation: Mr. Ghulam Samad, Senior Research Specialist, Research Division, CAREC Institute
  • Discussant: Mr. Kijin Kim, Senior Economist, ERCI, ERCD

Non-tariff measures and time and costs at border crossing points of perishable goods:
Impact on CAREC intra-regional trade

  • Presentation: Ms. Dorothea Ramizo, Associate Economics Officer, Office of the Director General, East Asia Department, ADB
  • Discussant: Mr. Rolando Avendano, Economist, ERCI, ERCD

Closing Remarks and Way Forward
Ms. Akiko Terada-Hagiwara, Principal Economist, EAOD , EARD

How to register

Registration is closed. 

Event organizers / partners

Asian Development Bank, CAREC

The event is supported by ADB-PRC Regional Knowledge Sharing Initiative (RKSI).

Event Contact