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Aid for Trade in developing countries

European trade strategy supports the trade growth potential of developing countries. The aim is to support these countries, engaged in global trade liberalization, in participating fully in the rules-based trading system. This strategy contributes to the coherence of the European Union’s (EU) policies on foreign trade and development aid.


EU Strategy on Aid for Trade : Enhancing EU support for trade-related needs in developing countries - the General Affairs and External Relations Council of 29 October 2007 [Not published in the Official Journal].

This Strategy aims to facilitate the integration of developing countries, and least developed countries in particular, in the world trading system. The Strategy promotes the development of trade as a means of reducing world poverty, thus contributing to the Millennium Development Goals.

The aid supports the introduction of trade policies in favour of developing the commercial sector and removing trade barriers. Developing countries face structural deficiencies which slow down the growth of supply and demand. As such, specific support should be provided for the development of funding, infrastructure, knowledge and production capacity.

The Strategy lays down a series of priorities which should:

  • increase the overall Aid for Trade provided by the EU under its development aid commitments;
  • increase the impact of resources provided by the EU and its Member States. In particular, through greater effectiveness of Aid for Trade. This involves increased collaboration between and coordination of partners when needs are assessed, appropriate responses are developed and Aid for Trade is provided;
  • encourage regional integration, including through trade between the African, Caribbean and Pacific States (ACP), and focus action on poverty reduction;
  • reinforce progress monitoring.


The European Trade Strategy comes under the framework of EU actions to fight world poverty, as well as the Doha Development Agenda and the initiative in favour of Aid for Trade, adopted by the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Last updated: 19.01.2010

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