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Chile and Swaziland ratify Trade Facilitation Agreement
Chile’s WTO Ambassador Héctor Casanueva and Swaziland’s WTO Ambassador Njabuliso Busisiwe Gwebu submitted their respective country’s instrument of acceptance to WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo on 21 November 2016, making them the 97th and 98th WTO Members to do so. With these submissions nearly 90 per cent of the ratifications needed to bring the TFA into force have now been received.
The TFA will enter into force once two-thirds of Members have domestically ratified a Protocol of Amendment and notified the WTO of their acceptance of this Protocol.
The TFA has a huge potential to reduce trade costs thereby boosting trade between countries and raising world income. OECD studies find that the implementation of the TFA could reduce worldwide trade costs between 12.5% and 17.5%. Developing country exports are expected to grow between 14% and 22% while becoming more diversified. Companies are more likely to become more profitable which should encourage domestic investment. In addition, foreign direct investment is likely to be attracted to countries that fully implement the TFA. Finally, increased trade means better employment prospects for workers and greater revenue collection by the government.