Skip to Main Navigation

Regionalism and trade facilitation : a primer (English)

This paper investigates when trade facilitation reform should be undertaken at the regional level. First, looking at both efficiency and implementation considerations, it confirms the perception that the regional dimension matters. Investigating where efficiency gains can be made, this research explains why national markets alone fail to produce the full scale economies and positive externalities of trade facilitation reform. Second, because trade facilitation policies need to address coordination and capacity failures, and because of the operational complexity challenge, the choice of the adequate platform for delivering reform is crucial. The lessons are that regional trade agreements offer good prospects of comprehensive and effective reform and can effectively complement multilateral and national initiatives. However, examples of implementation of trade facilitation reform in regional agreements do not seem to indicate that regional integration approaches have been more successful than trade facilitation through specific cooperation agreements or other efforts, multilateral or unilateral. Customs unions may be an exception here, and the author suggests reasons why this could be the case.


  • Author


  • Document Date


  • Document Type

    Policy Research Working Paper

  • Report Number


  • Volume No


  • Total Volume(s)


  • Country


  • Region

    The World Region,

  • Disclosure Date


  • Disclosure Status


  • Doc Name

    Regionalism and trade facilitation : a primer

  • Keywords

    regional trade agreement;economies of scale and scope;Trade and Transport Facilitation;movement of natural persons;international transport of good;trade facilitation measures;regional cooperation;regional public goods;international trade transaction;country of transit;regional trade integration;public-private partnership;mode of transport;exchange of information;trade facilitation issues;public private partnership;trade facilitation efforts;harmonization of standard;international supply chain;freedom of transit;free trade agreement;alternative transit route;absence of consideration;cost of service;trade facilitation services;volume of trade;national banking system;devolution of responsibility;multilateral trade negotiation;regional accreditation bodies;barriers to trade;level of policy;crime and criminal;efficient enforcement mechanisms;banks and banking;trade facilitation agenda;division of labor;inspection of good;provision of good;development research group;share of resource;cost of certification;availability of service;agreement on trade;capacity of country;pure public good;access to information;cooperation between customs;trade diversion effect;mutual recognition agreement;trade facilitation needs;scale production;scale of production;liberalization of trade;payment of tax;availability of infrastructure;flow of good;modern risk management;regional transport services;rules of origin;common external tariff;single window system;centers of excellence;payment of duty;gross domestic product;payment in advance;cost reduction measure;natural monopoly characteristics;lack of incentive;border crossing procedure;Letter of Credit;customs union;transit corridor;positive externality;market failure;regional initiative;transaction cost;deep integration;efficiency gain;negative externality;free riding;border post;regional dimension;landlocked country;comparative advantage;regional intervention;partner country;conformity assessment;physical inspection;preferential access;government regulation;customs operation;public intervention;transport network;customs reform;Political Economy;scale economy;standards conformity;financial service;customs authority;commercial risk;cross border;border control;international harmonization;international standard;risk sharing;administrative procedure;guarantee system;external trade;rural transportation infrastructure;trade partner;customs enforcement;regulatory competition;electronic system;internal market;institutional architecture;international negotiating;terrorist attack;trade creation;international trust;guarantee scheme;business person;global standard;national market;increased transparency;enforcement issues;customs cooperation;technical standard;trade finance;small fraction;international finance;pilot program;contingency planning;international accreditation;national initiatives;transport cost;preferential rule;border formalities;scarce resource;trading partner;political commitment;migration issues;multilateral agreement;customs integrity;financial resource;multilateral liberalization;multilateral approach;financial transfer;international agreement;loan collateral;joint training;built mechanism;redistribution arrangement;donor support;revenue reform;advanced economy;regulatory agenda;preferential treatment;regional capacity;association agreement;fact finding;transparency requirement;trade volume;specific capacity;coherent approach;facilitating trade;regional grouping;regional competition;legal system;road operator;institutional mechanism;border management;national strategy;domestic transport;infrastructure constraints;market solution;regional airport;research program;logistics chain;commercial exchanges;regional hub;multilateral context;increased competition;regulatory cooperation;coastal countries;transit service;oil product;road transport;excessive price;government intervention;air transport;Legal Services;sunk cost;road infrastructure;certification body;logistics service;payment guarantee



Official version of document (may contain signatures, etc)

  • Official PDF
  • TXT*
  • Total Downloads** :
  • Download Stats
  • *The text version is uncorrected OCR text and is included solely to benefit users with slow connectivity.



Regionalism and trade facilitation : a primer (English). Policy Research working paper ; no. WPS 4464 Washington, D.C. : World Bank Group.