National technical assistance activities

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Each national TA is guided by its own specific objectives addressing the needs of the participants and based on national needs assessments. They include different categories of activities:

Topic-based activities, focus on specific issues at the national level that, in terms of priority needs and depth of treatment, cannot be adequately covered in the regional seminars and in the TPCs. Requests for national activities can be made at any time.

Technical assistance within the Trade Policy Review Mechanism (TPRM) framework, which is a valuable forum for achieving transparency in, and understanding of, the trade policies and practices of Members. TPRs of developing and LDC WTO Members have increasingly performed a technical assistance function and have been useful in increasing understanding of the trade policy structure in place and its relationship with the WTO Agreements, playing an important part in “capacity building and mainstreaming”. The main objectives of the reviews are:

  • improved understanding in these countries of the WTO Agreements, enabling better compliance and integration in the MTS; and,
  • enhanced interaction between government agencies, also facilitated by the reviews.

Assisting beneficiaries in conducting needs assessments: WTO Members can use the guidelines for needs assessment and are encouraged to adapt the approach to their own conditions.

WTO reference centres are dedicated facilities, mostly established at the national level for eligible beneficiaries, generally attached to the Ministry of Trade. The main objective of establishing and strengthening reference centres is that government officials, the press, business community, academia, and other authorized users have better access to WTO-related trade information and documentation. For more information on WTO reference centres.


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