Aid for Trade: Twenty Lessons from Existing Aid Schemes
Following from the widespread acknowledgment that developing countries need support to benefit from trade liberalisation, debates on ‘aid for trade’ (AFT) have attracted much attention over the past years. This is not surprising since current AFT initiatives seem unprecedented in their purported geographical scope, thematic coverage and, possibly, resources involved. Aid for trade is discussed under the overarching framework of the World Trade Organization (WTO) but also in the context of regional and bilateral trade talks such as the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) currently being negotiated between the European Union (EU) and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries. Precisely because of this level of ambition, and the possible thematic and geographic scope, the actual operationalisation of AFT initiatives to deliver incremental trade-related aid is a complex exercise that presents many challenges for all involved.