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USTR gives $2.3 bn to promote exports from Less Developed Countries

18
Dec '08
U.S. Trade Representative Susan C. Schwab announced that the United States increased its annual spending on Aid for Trade programs, also known as trade capacity building, to $2.3 billion in the 2008 fiscal year, an increase of 60 percent from the 2007 fiscal year. Since 2000, the United States has provided more than $9.7 billion in total trade-related assistance to our less developed trading partners.

“We continue to work to meet the $2.7 billion target in annual Aid for Trade initiatives by 2010, a commitment we made at the 2005 World Trade Organization's Hong Kong Ministerial Meeting,” said Ambassador Schwab. “This is another example of the ongoing U.S. commitment to promoting development and achieving a successful conclusion to the Doha Round negotiations.”

The United States is the largest single-country provider of trade-related assistance, including development of trade-related physical infrastructure. This assistance is aimed at helping developing countries take advantage of the opportunities of the global trading system, and more broadly, harness trade as an engine of growth and development. The U.S. approach to trade capacity building emphasizes grants - rather than loans - and allocates funds based largely on local needs as determined by recipient countries.

For example, U.S. trade capacity building projects help small and medium size businesses and farmers enter markets and promote diversified economic growth around the world. The U.S. Agency for International Development and the Millennium Challenge Corporation are the largest U.S. providers of Aid for Trade programs.

“Our ability to provide effective programs that help countries harness the growth potential of trade relies on developing countries, particularly the least-developed, including trade in their development programs,” Ambassador Schwab said. “Our commitment to our developing country partners remains unwavering, and we recognize the growing importance of these countries' contributions to the global trading system. Aid for Trade is a shared responsibility between recipient countries and donors.”

U.S. Trade Representative


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