Trading Stories

Experiences with Gender and Trade

image of Trading Stories
Through twenty regional and country case studies, Trading Stories pulls together the key links between trade, gender and economic development. Ten case studies focus on the gender impacts of trade policies, detailing differential consequences on men and women; and ten focus on linking women with global markets – including FairTrade, organic, niche and mainstream markets – through a range of best practices involving government, NGOs, people’s organisations and associations, private sector and international agencies.

The book draws on three recent Commonwealth Secretariat publications on gender and trade: Gender Mainstreaming in the Multilateral Trading System; Chains of Fortune: Linking Women Producers and Workers with Global Markets; and Gender and Trade Action Guide and is a useful addition to the growing body of evidence that will help governments to effectively mainstream gender in their trade policy.




Gender equality is a key factor for equitable pro-poor growth and sustainable human development. Trade, as an important aspect of globalisation and a major source of growth and development, can have major implications for gender equality. Yet gender analysis has not been integrated either into the substantive areas of trade policy and agreements or into non-trade concerns, such as food security, public health and labour standards, that have increasingly formed part of the negotiating framework for trade. The processes of globalisation and trade liberalisation are presumed to be gender neutral; they often ignore the fact that gender inequalities within society and the economy mean that trade policies do not have the same effects on women and men. Contributing to these differential impacts are gender differences in roles and responsibilities in the household, in the composition of a country’s workforce and key export industries, and in access to resources – material, financial, technological and social.


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