Facilitate Trade for Development: Aid for Trade
Applied holistically and flexibly, aid for trade can help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at its core calls to “increase aid-for-trade support for developing countries, in particular least developed countries”. This echoes the aid-for-trade reference in the Addis Ababa Action Agenda of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development. We discuss how aid for trade already contributes to the SDGs after highlighting the achievements of the Aid-for-Trade Initiative. This is followed with analysis of the continued importance of aid in financing development, particularly in the least developed countries. Next, the role of the private sector in aid for trade is presented as an example of how to improve partnerships for development. Finally, we draw on lessons from the monitoring of aid for trade for the SDGs and the need for, but also difficulty in, making the process truly country driven. We conclude by stressing that aid for trade—ten years after its creation at the Hong Kong WTO Ministerial Conference—is more than ever relevant in helping developing countries make trade a tool for prosperity.