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WTO Working Papers

WTO working papers usually represent research in progress. Such research may be conducted in the preparation of WTO Secretariat reports, studies or other material for WTO members. The papers are circulated for comment because the WTO considers critical review of professional research to be extremely important.

English

Improving the Availability of Trade Finance in Developing Countries: An Assessment of Remaining Gaps

While conditions in trade finance markets returned to normality in the main routes of trade, the structural difficulties of poor countries in accessing trade finance have not disappeared – and might have been worsened during and after the global financial crisis. There is a consistent flow of information indicating that trade finance markets have remained characterized by a greater selectivity in risk-taking and flight to "quality" customers. In that environment, the lower end of the market has been struggling to obtain affordable finance, with the smaller companies in the smaller, poorer countries most affected. In an area where statistics are difficult to find, this paper looks at recent available information and provides background on the persistent and significant market gaps for trade finance in developing countries, notably in Africa and developing Asia. It discusses various initiatives in which the WTO and partner institutions are involved to alleviate in part this situation.

English

Keywords: developing countries, trade financing, cooperation with international financial institutions, G-20, coherence
JEL: F13: International Economics / Trade / Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations; G21: Financial Economics / Financial Institutions and Services / Banks; Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages; G32: Financial Economics / Corporate Finance and Governance / Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill; O19: Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth / Economic Development / International Linkages to Development; Role of International Organizations; F36: International Economics / International Finance / Financial Aspects of Economic Integration; F34: International Economics / International Finance / International Lending and Debt Problems
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