Trade Advocacy Fund

TAF team visits the Pacific to harvest results & learn lessons

October 31st, 2016 by

south-pacific-photoThe TAF Fund Manager team recently embarked on a mission to the Pacific region to collect information and lessons from stakeholders as part of a results harvesting exercise.

The visit, which took place from the 24th  to 28th October 2016, had the objectives of assessing the relevance of the capacity building outputs of TAF grants in the region, identifying their intended and unintended results at individual and organisational level, and highlighting lessons learnt from the assistance that could be carried forward in TAF 2. The three identified TAF grants and beneficiaries that were assessed in the Pacific include:

TAF’s grant to the Ministry of Trade, Tourism, Commerce and Industry in Vanuatu to develop negotiating strategies and build negotiating skills.

  • TAF’s support to the Office of the Chief Trade Adviser (OCTA) and Forum Island Countries in PACER Plus negotiations with Australia and New Zealand.
  • TAF’s assistance to the Pacific Island Forum Secretariat (PIFS) in for negotiations on the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union.

An important focus of the visit was to measure the sustainability of the training component of the TAF grants, with indicators looking at the number of TAF-trained officials that are currently in employment and who utilize the skills and knowledge gained from the training activities.

During the visit to the PIFS Secretariat, the team called on PIFS Deputy Secretary General, Andie Fong Toy, who expressed her thanks to the TAF project for the support granted to the Secretariat and Member States, in building trade negotiating capacity. Discussions with PIFS highlighted a key outcome of TAF support as providing a baseline and reference point for Member States in conducting subsequent negotiations, such as the PACER Plus negotiations and potential negotiations with New Caledonia and China. The consultation also surfaced issues which generally hinder the sustainability of capacity building assistance, such as high staff turnover.

Consultations held with Vanuatu’s Department of External Trade, which has recently moved from the Ministry of Trade to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, further highlighted the usefulness and benefits of TAF sponsored training at the individual level. For Vanuatu, this has in turn strengthened the capability of its National Trade Development Committee (NTDC), as the TAF trainees serve as members of the Committee and the Department of External Trade serves as its secretariat.

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TAF Projects (December 2013)
Country or Region Grant Title

Implementation Status

Afghanistan Advisory Mission to Afghanistan

Completed

COMESA Advisory Mission to the East and Southern Africa (ESA) Group

Completed

EAC Advisory Mission to the EAC

Completed

Ethiopia Advisory Mission to Ethiopia

Completed

Global Feasibility Study for Advisory Centre on Regional Trade Agreements (ACORTA)

Completed

Global TAF Advisory Event 1

Completed

Lao PDR Advisory Mission to Lao PDR

Completed

Lesotho Advisory Mission to Lesotho

Completed

Malawi Advisory Mission to Malawi

Completed

Multi-Region Advisory Mission to  the AUC

Completed

Nepal Advisory Mission to Nepal

Completed

PIFS Support to Pacific ACP States in EPA negotiations

Completed

Samoa Logistical Support

Completed

Sierra Leone Advisory Mission to Sierra Leone

Completed

Solomon Islands Advisory Mission to the Solomon Islands

Completed

Sri Lanka Advisory Mission to Sri Lanka

Completed

Uganda Advisory Mission to Uganda

Completed

Vanuatu Advisory Mission to Vanuatu

Completed

ACP Call-down Support to the ACP Group in Geneva

Ongoing

Afghanistan Trade Negotiation Training and Capacity Building Support to Ministry of Commerce and Industry

Ongoing

EAC TradeSift Training for EAC Tripartite FTA Negotiations

Ongoing

ECOWAS Trade Capacity Building Programme

Ongoing

ECOWAS WTO Law Advisory Services and Capacity Building

Ongoing

Global Channel 2: Training on WTO Law and Dispute Settlement – ACWL

Ongoing

Global Channel 2: Training on WTO Law and Dispute Settlement – Trapca

Ongoing

Global TAF Advisory Publications/Toolkits

Ongoing

LDC Group Support to LDC Services Waiver

Ongoing

Nigeria Support to Nigeria Ministry of Trade and Investment

Ongoing

PIFS Support to the Pacific ACP States in EPA negotiations

Ongoing

OCTA Support for PACER Plus Negotiations

Ongoing

Solomon Islands Strengthening Trade Negotiation Capacity of Solomon Islands

Ongoing

The Gambia Support to the Ministry of Trade

Ongoing

TMSA Support to Tripartite FTA negotiations

Ongoing

Vanuatu Trade Negotiations Support

Ongoing

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