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Multi-Donor Trust Fund: Program Structure

The Multi-Donor Trust Fund for Trade and Development (MDTF-TD) operates through a programmatic approach. The World Bank’s six regional divisions and its central International Trade Department develop work programs that respond to client demands and challenges emerging from the world trading system. These are submitted annually to the trust fund’s steering committee, which sets the overall direction for the MDTF-TD, establishes funding envelopes, and approves annual work programs. The steering committee is chaired by the Director of the World Bank International Trade Department and includes representatives from each of the donor agencies and a World Bank Regional Director.

Approximately 70 percent of funding provides direct support for country and regional activities responding to specific client needs. For fiscal year 2010, the steering committee has allocated 55 percent of this funding to work in sub-Saharan Africa.  Each of the other five Regions receives nine percent of this funding. The MDTF-TD has a preference for funding work in low-income countries (including landlocked states, and small and vulnerable island economies). It also supports activities in middle-income countries where work addresses regional externalities, is innovative (e.g., addressing new trade issues such relationships between gender or climate change and trade), or provides significant demonstration effects for low-income countries.

At the global level, the trust fund finances development of benchmarking datasets (e.g., the Logistics Performance Indictors), policy analysis, economic research, capacity-building programs, and analytical tools. These activities are managed by the International Trade Department. Approximately 30 percent of the trust fund’s resources support this work program.

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