A TPF needs to cover the full array of issues affecting
a country’s prospects for trade and development. In
addition to border measures affecting goods, these
may include a very wide range of matters related
to investment, trade in services, and any other law,
regulation, or policy that might constrain or promote
the country’s ability to compete in the global market.
The specific measures at issue may differ greatly from
one country to another, depending on the types of
industries in which it is engaged, its principal partners
in international trade and investment, and the nature
of its domestic legal and regulatory regime.
Perhaps the most problematic topic for interministerial
consultations is trade in services, a subject
that naturally implies the possibility that trade
negotiators may step onto the turf of the ministries
of transportation, finance, justice, and education,
among others. The issue is partly one of awareness.
From actors to accountants, and from bus drivers to
bankers, service providers may never have thought of
themselves as actual or potential exporters. They may 

Table 15. Countervailing duty orders imposed on developing countries, 1995–2014
Source: Calculated from WTO data posted at
Africa and the Middle East Americas Asia and the Pacific
Subject to
11–100 orders
— — India
Subject to
1–10 orders
Côte d’Ivoire, Israel, South
Africa, United Arab Emirates
Argentina, Brazil, Colombia,
Mexico, Venezuela (Bolivarian
Republic of)
China, Indonesia, Iran (Islamic
Republic of), Republic of Korea,
Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines,
Sri Lanka, Taiwan Province of
China, Thailand, Turkey, Viet Nam
Table 16. Countervailing duty activity initiated by developing countries, 1995–2014
Source: Calculated from WTO data posted at
Africa and the Middle East Americas Asia and the Pacific
11+ orders
— Mexico —
1–10 orders
South Africa Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa
Rica, Peru, Venezuela (Bolivarian
Republic of)
China, Turkey
Investigations but
no orders
Egypt, Israel — India, Pakistan
be quite surprised to hear that their activities come
within the ambit of trade negotiations. Matters are
more complicated if the ministries that regulate these
sectors object to a process by which the trade ministry
may negotiate commitments affecting the laws and
regulations that they implement. Many officials in trade
ministries have had similar, negative experiences in
the run-up to new negotiations, encountering strong
resistance from other government agencies when
they request guidance on what the country should
seek in a negotiation, and be prepared to give up,
when bargaining over the commitments made on
trade in services. Both for services providers and
the corresponding line ministries, trade negotiators
often find that it is necessary to conduct awarenessraising exercises such as national seminars on trade
in services in order to educate the public and private
sectors and to establish working relationships with
regulators and stakeholders.
The analysis of tariff and trade data for goods is relatively simple by comparison with the task of assessing
the impact of non-tariff measures affecting goods, services, investment and intellectual property. Information
on these measures can be much more difficult to obtain, and their consequences can be harder to quantify, both for one’s own country and one’s trading partners. Services pose especially difficult challenges. The
general scheme and language of the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) mimic the principles and structure of the goods-oriented GATT, but
on closer inspection, this agreement and its subject
matter are conceptually far more complex. The way in
which commitments are negotiated and expressed is
entirely different, and analysts cannot easily gauge the
actual effect of these commitments. A country’s GATS
commitments do not readily indicate whether they are
truly liberalizing, or are just bound at the applied rate,
or even above that rate (i.e. permit a country to become more restrictive than it presently is). Matters are
further complicated by the fact that there is no universally accepted nomenclature for services, and even
the most economically advanced countries’ statistics
on trade in services are at best incomplete. These are
all obstacles that need to be overcome, to the maximum extent possible, when assessing a country’s
actual and potential engagement in trade in services.
Countries are affected in varying ways by trade in
services. They may have interests as both exporters
and importers, depending on the sector and the
mode in which the service is being traded, and the
services in question may affect a wide range of related
sectors. Even goods-producing sectors will rely on
access to quality services at affordable prices, and
restrictions on foreign providers of those services
may impose costs on other domestic producers. That
is why the TPF for Zambia recommended that the
country pursue unilateral liberalization of its services
sector, adopting a “4 plus 5 strategy” in the WTO.
“This strategy,” it asserted, “will help the country
focus on the sectors which are important for reducing
costs and are currently impeding growth:

services, telecommunications, transport and energy”
(p.52). The TPF also called for liberalization of five key
services sectors at the regional level, namely business
and professional services, communications services,
financial services, transport services and labour
mobility (i.e. the entry of business persons).
TPFs often stress the importance of services
for national development. The report on Angola
offers a fine example of a TPF that deals in depth
with services. It recommended that a national
strategy plan be developed for the services sector,
looking at how infrastructural services can be
built through the channelling of public funding,
public–private partnerships, regional cooperation
and producer services. The TPF also had more
specific recommendations with respect to the
financial, energy, construction, tourism, transport
and telecommunications sectors. Similarly, services
figured prominently in the TPF for Zambia. It
advocated a 4 plus 5 strategy that contemplates
unilateral liberalization by way of WTO commitments
on financial services, telecommunications, transport
and energy services sectors, as well as regional
liberalization of business and professional services,
communication services, financial services, transport
services and labour mobility in respect of the entry
of business persons. 

The report on the Dominican
Republic attributes significant improvement in
infrastructure and telecommunications, financial, port
and airport concession services to the incentives and
special legislation aimed at promoting development
through private participation (domestic or foreign).
Small, open economies are highly services oriented,
as the report of Jamaica noted, but are also significant
net importers of those process services that are
integral to value chain participation. That TPF argued
that the country will need to intensify its efforts to
attract external investment and strengthen its services
capabilities outside of the very successful tourism and
travel sector.

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