Commonwealth Secretariat Discussion Paper

The Discussion Paper series raises awareness of topics that are of importance to Commonwealth work programmes. Discussion Papers explore an issue relating to research or programme activities and provoke debate on it. The intended readership is researchers and policy advisers.


Enhancing Services Trade

The Role of Government

This Discussion Paper makes a case for government support to promote services trade. This is an area that has traditionally been left to the private sector; a model widely practiced in richer countries where the services sector is strong. Services trade is still new to policy-makers in developing countries and the level of business activity necessitates support from government if the sector is to grow.

The paper uses empirical evidence and case studies to examine the impact of government interventions to stimulate services trade in a number of key areas, including: trade negotiations; creating an enabling national legislative environment; export promotion of services exports; and other cross-cutting issues such as education and infrastructure development. It also discusses what governments and development partners should be doing to ensure growth in services export.


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