Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Report 2021 Supply Chains of Critical Goods Amid the Covid-19 Pandemic Disruptions, Recovery, and Resilience   [open pdf - 2MB]

From the Foreword: "The COVID-19 [coronavirus disease 2019] pandemic dramatically reduced international trade last year and significantly disrupted global value chains, complicating progress in Asia and the Pacific toward sustainable development. While trade in goods has since recovered strongly, supply chains need to be made more resilient, particularly to ensure the supply of critical goods. The Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Report 2021 shows that despite COVID-19, economies in the region have managed to cut red tape to keep trade flowing, as evidenced by the results of the 2021 Global Survey on Digital and Sustainable Trade Facilitation. Also evident is that digitalization of trade procedures has accelerated, although much more remains to be done. Cross-border trade digitalization has great potential to help countries in Asia and the Pacific access critical goods, especially those most vulnerable to trade uncertainty and crisis. The report indicates that further acceleration of digital trade facilitation implementation could cut average trade costs in the region by more than 13 per cent. It suggests that the Framework Agreement on Facilitation of Cross-Border Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific--a United Nations treaty that entered into force in early 2021--provides a dedicated, inclusive, and capacity-building-focused intergovernmental platform to pursue this agenda. The report also highlights the need for more holistic and inclusive trade facilitation strategies in the region to ensure that groups and sectors with special needs benefit from the trade recovery. Measures are specifically needed to support small and medium-sized enterprises, women, and the agricultural sector to make the recovery more sustainable."

2021 Asian Development Bank. Posted here with permission. Document is under a Creative Commons license and requires proper attribution and noncommercial use to be shared: [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/igo/].
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