Pacific Trade Facilitation Initiative

Introducing the Initiative

The Pacific Trade Facilitation Initiative is a multi-stakeholder partnership that supports Forum Island Countries to engage in regional actions to reduce time and costs of trading across borders.

Trade Facilitation is one of the four priorities of the Pacific Aid-for-Trade Strategy 2020-2025, notably it falls under its component number four related to ‘Deepening Forum Markets’. Implementing Trade Facilitation measures is particularly important in the Pacific, noting that the small size and high geographical distance of Forum Island Countries already impose high costs of trading across borders. Moreover, implementation of trade facilitation measures in the Pacific (40% in 2021) is well below the global average (64.7% in 2021), thus indicating potential high returns from investing in trade facilitation – see HERE for further information.

On 6-9 October 2020, PIF Secretariat and the Commonwealth Secretariat (ComSec) organised a regional workshop on trade facilitation. The meeting showcased the benefits of regional trade facilitation approaches, including the Pacific Humanitarian Pathway on COVID-19, and the Regional Trade Facilitation Strategy in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and tasked the PIF Secretariat to prepare a proposal to promote such approaches in the Pacific A proposal was tabled at the 2021 Forum Trade Ministers Meeting, when Ministers agreed to pursue the development of a Pacific Regional Trade Facilitation Strategy, to be developed by the by the PIF Secretariat, with support of the World Bank Group.

An inception workshop on the Pacific Regional Trade Facilitation Strategy took place in November 2021, whose outcomes are available HERE. Virtual national consultations were undertaken from January to July 2022. Invitations were sent to all FICs and eventually held in 11 countries. The draft Pacific Regional Trade Facilitation Strategy was shared with Members in October 2022 and will be validated at a virtual regional workshop in December 2022.

Background Documents

  1. Consolidated results of 4rt Quarter 2021 Survey – responses to the survey taken in preparation for the November 2021 workshop (click here)
  2. Consolidated results of 1st and 2nd Quarter 2022 Survey – responses to the survey in connection with the national consultations undertaken in the first half of 2022 (click here)
  3. Summary of national consultations 1Q/2Q 2022 (click here)