ITC to train businesses in CIS region on WTO issues

17 September 2013
ITC News
Pilot programme targeting the business community in the Commonwealth of Independent States aims to build their capacities on aspects related to the implementation of World Trade Organization agreements

Entrepreneurs and business representatives in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) will soon be able to benefit from a new ITC training programme aimed at building the skills and capacities of businesses in the CIS region, enabling them to better understand the benefits of membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO).

The training programme, which will be available later this year, consists of a five-day training course in Geneva, Switzerland, organized in cooperation with the Russian Federation’s Competency Development Center in International Trade. Training modules will cover topics such as measures to protect the interests of domestic producers, intellectual property regulations, the international trade-dispute settlement system, trade in services, technical regulations and others.

‘Equipping small and medium-sized enterprises in the CIS region with the capacity and skills to allow them to adapt to the new trade regulatory environment and maximize the benefits of WTO membership is critical,’ said Elena Boutrimova, Chief of the Office for Eastern Europe and Central Asia at ITC.

The goal of the training is to raise understanding within the business community, but also among policymakers and representatives of academia, about WTO-related rules related to tariffs and domestic regulations aimed at ensuring transparency and competition. Understanding of these rules allows businesses to benefit from WTO membership and to better manage the challenges the membership entails.

The programme aims to support the businesses to ‘compete in global markets and cope with the increased competition at home,’ said Ms Boutrimova.

Expansion of the programme

ITC’s training course is a follow-up component to the first part of the programme, which will consist of training sessions organized by the Competency Development Center in International Trade. This portion of the training will take place in Russia or other CIS countries.

The goal is to expand the programme and develop a series of these training sessions in both the CIS region and in Geneva, depending on demand, after the pilot programme launches later this year.

The programme was developed within the framework of a Memorandum of Understanding signed between ITC and the Russian government in July. The Russian Federation joined the WTO in August 2012.

For more information about the programme and details about how businesses in the CIS region can register for the programme, please click here.