Aid for Trade and Export Competitiveness: New Opportunities for Africa

"This paper has argued that AFT can do much to support actions by governments and the private sector to improve the competitiveness of African products. Much of the national AFT agenda revolves around improving the performance of service industries and government services that have a bearing on trade. This will require promotion of greater contestability of markets, including through entry by foreign providers, complemented by effective regulatory regimes to attain equity and efficiency objectives. National AFT should be complemented by a greater focus on regional cooperation as an instrument to enhance the competitiveness of African producers on domestic and world markets. Trade policy is increasingly defined and implemented at the regional level, and there is great scope for multi-country trade-related infrastructure projects and cooperation on regulatory reform to reduce trade costs for producers and thus support and reinforce national programs. AFT funding can help provide much needed regional public and/or club goods and address coordination failures."