UNOSSC Session at the 2021 WTO Aid-for-Trade Stocktaking Event on the Role of South-South Cooperation and Digital Technology Post-COVID-19 for Increased Trade Facilitation

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UNOSSC will be organizing a session at the upcoming virtual Aid-for-Trade Stocktaking Event, organized by the World Trade Organization (WTO) being held from 23-25 March 2021, on ‘The Role of South-South Cooperation and Digital Technology in Structuring a Globally Inclusive Post-COVID-19 Economic Architecture for Increased Trade Facilitation.’

When: 24 March 2021, 17.00 – 18.30 PM, CET

Session Information

The role of digitalization has become critical within the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. While digitalization was embedded in many domains prior to the pandemic, the latter created what is known as ‘new normal’ conditions characterized by reduced physical contact and restricted movement. These changes rapidly increased the digitalization of transactions between and among people, pushing a new scope of tradable goods and services and fostering new areas of mutual cooperation among Southern economies, both technologically and financially. As such, the gradually increasing share of South-South trade over the last few decades and its resilience in the face of COVID-linked disruption call for a thorough theoretical and empirical understanding of the nature and implications of South-South trade in building back better in a post-COVID-19 world. 

The discussions in this session aim to tackle the following areas a) South-South cooperation and digitalization in trade and investment; b) South-South cooperation modalities and instruments for accelerating regional trade integration and for creating a more balanced international trade regime; c) South-South cooperation and financial technology in a globally inclusive economic architecture; and d) Challenges and prospects in the context of sustainable recovery. 

Opening/Closing Remarks: Dr. Adel Abdellatif, Director a.i., UNOSSC (tbc) 

Chair/Moderator: Dr. Hany Besada, Senior Research/Programme Advisor, UNOSSC

Ms. Bineswaree Bolaky, Economic Affairs Officer, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) South-South Cooperation Finance for Mobilization of the Private Sector to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals 

Dr. George Kararach, Lead Economist, African Development Bank (AfDB) South-South Cooperation Modalities and Instruments for Accelerating Regional Trade in Africa 

Professor Myriam Ramzy & Professor Chahir Zaki, Cairo University Trade Integration and South-South Cooperation: How Digitalization Matters in Africa


Launch of Publications


The below UNOSSC publications are scheduled to be launched at the event:

South-South Global Thinkers Scoping Paper: South-South Cooperation and Investment in Africa: Implications of the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement
Authored by: Dr. Hany Besada, Senior Research and Program Advisor, UNOSSC 

Trade and Investment Capacity Building through South-South Cooperation: Lessons from Supporting Indian Trade and Investment for Africa
Authored by: Ms. Vandana Prakash Nair, Consultant, International Trade Centre 

From Trilemma to Triple Wins: Creating Synergies among Chinese Labour-intensive Manufacturers, Global Buyers and Low-wage Southern Countries
Authored by: Professors Wen Chen, Jiajun Xu and Jia Yu, Institute of New Structural Economics, Peking University

The Link Between Trade and Inequality: A Literature Review and Emerging Research Agenda from the Perspective of South-South Cooperation
Authored by: Professor Milindo Chakrabarti, Research Information System for Developing Countries