Poorest countries need market access in developing world too – UN official
Developing countries should lift trade barriers on the products of disadvantaged countries to enable them benefit from the fast expanding South-South trade opportunities, the High Representative for Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing countries and Small Island States, Anwarul K. Chowdhury, told the General Assembly yesterday.
“South-South trade has been growing at 11 per cent a year for the past decade…. Africa’s trade with Asia, for example, trebled from $6 billion to nearly $18 billion in the last decade. South-South trade now represents approximately 40 per cent of the trade of developing countries,” he said.
Mr. Chowdhury also stressed that duty-free and quota-free preferential treatment of the LDCs by developed countries would have a major impact on their economic fortunes. “This alone, if implemented by the World Trade Organization (WTO), could generate welfare gains of up to $8 billion and export gains of up to $6.4 billion,” he said.
He emphasized the urgency of the LDCs’ call to resolve the issue of cotton and other agricultural subsidies by developed countries, which distort international trade.