WTO news: what’s been happening in the WTO

20 December 2002

Donors pledge substantial support to JITAP (II)

A meeting of donors, African partners countries, and the three Geneva based agencies (ITC, UNCTAD and WTO), endorsed the launching of the new phase of the Joint Integrated Technical Assistance Programme (JITAP) based on the success of the first phase, which was launched in 1998. JITAP seeks to build capacity to understand the emerging MTS, comply with it, and to derive benefit from it. Donors pledged substantial support to the follow up phase, which aims at achieving the same objectives over a period of four years. The $ 12.6 million dollar programme is expected to commence early next year.

At the meeting today the governments that announced their contribution to the Common Trust Fund of the programme were: Denmark, Finland, France, Norway, and Sweden. Governments that conveyed their firm commitment to contribute shortly were Netherlands, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. Canada already pledged substantial support to the programme at the G8 meeting in June 2002.

Eight new countries: Botswana, Cameroon, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Senegal, Zambia will join the eight original countries — Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Tunisia, and Uganda, that benefited from the first phase of the programme:

The sixteen countries in the new phase represent a careful balance among LDCs, non-LDCs, different sub-regions of Africa, and different linguistic groupings.