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03 October
2014

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WTO Public Forum 2014: Trade and Africa

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11am to 1pm

W19 Room S3, WTO Headquarters, Geneva. Switzerland.


Trade preference programs have been promoted by the United States, EU, China and others as a strategy for enhancing economic growth in the world’s least developed countries. From 2001-2010, six of the world’s ten fastest growing economies were in Sub-Saharan Africa, in part a result of trade expansion due to preference programs. Despite the growth that trade has helped fuel on the African continent; many Africans have yet to experience the direct benefits of trade in the form of economic opportunity and good jobs. The industry responsible for much of Africa’s growth story is petroleum, which provides lucrative returns but little employment. Given the social aims of preference programs, their social impact must be maximized toward fueling broad-based economic prosperity.

The JustJobs Network will lead a working group session on how preference programs can contribute to more and better employment in the emerging economies of Africa. This session will take up the overarching theme – “why trade matters to everyone” – through the lens of the Trade and Africa sub-theme. The expansion of trade in Africa and the simultaneous acceleration of economic growth are due, in part, to trade preference programs extended to least developed countries by the United States, Europe, and China, among others. The JustJobs Network will explore in this session how preference programs can be more effective in bringing the benefits of trade and growth to people in the form of economic opportunity and more and better jobs.


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