World Trade Report 2016

Levelling the Trading Field for SMEs

image of World Trade Report 2016

This report examines the participation of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in international trade, how the international trade landscape is changing for SMEs, and what the multilateral trading system does and can do to encourage more widespread and inclusive SME participation in global markets.

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Trade obstacles to SME participation in trade

Section D investigates the major trade-related impediments to SMEs’ participation in trade. A key finding in this section is that all types of trade costs, whether they are fixed or variable, adversely affect the ability of SMEs to participate in trade, to a greater extent than large enterprises. Since SMEs are more sensitive to trade barriers than large firms, removing obstacles to trade benefits SMEs disproportionately. It is therefore important to understand what these major obstacles are.

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