First WTO virtual introductory trade policy course underway for poorest countries

A total of 34 officials from 12 least-developed countries are taking part in the WTO’s first Virtual Introductory Trade Policy Course from July 5 to August 6, 2021. The objective is to enhance participants’ understanding and knowledge of WTO issues.

In his opening address to the participants, Deputy Director-General Xiangchen Zhang said: “The WTO attaches particular importance to training and capacity-building activities aimed at developing country members and observers, and more specifically at least-developed countries (LDCs). We hope that these activities will allow LDCs to improve their trade capacity and better integrate into the multilateral trading system.”

The course aims to help strengthen LDCs’ participation in the negotiations and discussions taking place at the WTO. Its curriculum covers the WTO agreements, the founding principles of the WTO and how the organization functions. Particular attention is paid to WTO members’ transparency obligations, development issues and special and differential treatment for developing countries. The course uses various training methods, including lectures, practical exercises and interactive discussions on current WTO issues.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the sessions are delivered entirely online and replicate most of the training components that face-to-face trade policy courses offer. The course provides participants with the opportunity to enhance their network of contacts and to interact with WTO experts. Once they have successfully completed the course, participants will be able to apply to take part in more advanced WTO courses for either specialists or generalists.  The list of available courses can be found here.

List of participants: