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Trade Costs and International Development: Moving Research and Analysis into Operations

DECRG Course, Trade Costs & Facilitation
Begins:   May 15, 2008 09:00
Ends:   May 15, 2008 17:00
Contact Person:   Michelle S. L. Chester

When: May 15, 2008

Time: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Venue: MC10-100

Description: The removal of non-tariff barriers and lower trade costs are increasingly recognized as key factors that affect private sector performance.  The ability of firms to deliver goods and services on time - at lowest possible costs - is also a key determinant of successful integration into the world economy and lifting the poor out of poverty.  This one-day course will provide an update on these issues based on the question: What research, data, and empirical evidence do we have today on trade facilitation and trade costs - and how do we move that research and analysis more efficiently into operations on the ground at the country and regional level? 


9:00 a.m. 

Welcome and Introduction

Bernard Hoekman, Senior Advisor, Development Research Group, Trade, World Bank

John S. Wilson, Lead Economist, Development Research Group, Trade, World Bank  

9:15 - 10:30 a.m 

Trade Costs: Key Issues in a Research and Country Context

Chair: Bernard Hoekman, Senior Advisor, Development Research Group, Trade, World Bank

This session will provide a summary overview of key analytical questions in research on trade costs and related non-tariff barriers, the state of data and indicators on trade costs for policy research and use in operations, and examples of how trade facilitation fits into broader country assistance agendas.

Joseph F. Francois, Professor of Economics, Johannes Kepler Universitat, Linz

Uma Subramanian, Senior Private Sector Development Specialist, FIAS, World Bank

11:00 - 12:15 p.m.  Sources of Trade Costs: A Focus on the World Development Report 2009: “Spatial Disparities and Development Policy”

Chair: John S. Wilson, Lead Economist, Development Research Group, World Bank

Understanding the relationships between trade costs, transport, and development – as they affect changing economic geography is increasingly important in regard to growth and poverty reduction.  This session will provide a summary of key messages from relevant chapters in the forthcoming World Development Report 2009. 
Indermit Gill, Director, World Development Report 2009 

Andreas Kopp, Lead Transport Economist, World Bank

1:45 - 3:00 p.m. The Impact of Trade Costs on Development and Poverty

Chair: Mona Haddad, Sector Manager, PREM Trade Department (tbc)

Poverty reduction strategies require increased precision in regard to both the sources and impact of factors driving barriers to trade.  This session will address some of the impacts of trade costs on development and poverty, including the least developed countries.

“Making Trade Facilitation Reach Poor Farmers,” Guido Porto, Economist, World Bank

“Has Distance Died? Update and Policy Implications” Celine Carrere, Centre d’Etudes et de Recherche sur le Developpment International

3:00 - 4:00 p.m. Priorities Going Forward: The Agenda Ahead

Chair: John S. Wilson, Development Research Group, Trade, World Bank

What are the priories ahead in policy-relevant research on trade costs, facilitation, and development prospects?  This session will address suggestions for next steps and areas for research and analysis to inform operations and poverty reduction strategies.

Caroline Freund, Senior Economist, Development Research Group, World Bank

Vincent Palmade, Lead Private Sector Development Specialist
Africa Region, World Bank

Additional materials:

Jose Luis Guasch, Senior Advisor, Latin American and Caribbean Region, World Bank. 

Contact: Michelle Chester

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