Overview

    Summary

    ITC Investment Facilitation for Development (IF4D) project aims to build capacity for policymakers in the developing countries to engage in the Structured Discussion on Investment Facilitation for Development at the WTO, as well as gather ground-level inputs and provide advisory services to the discussions. 

    Partners

    Sustainable Development Goals

    This project contributes to the following Sustainable Development Goals, as defined by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

    Overview

    Investment Facilitation for Development (IF4D)

    Foreign direct investment (FDI) plays a significant role in the economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, especially in developing countries. However, FDI flows need to be ramped up considerably in order to meet this objective. Beyond such economic fundamentals as market size and growth, the quality of infrastructure and the level of skills, difficulties related to investment procedures, predictability and transparency of the regulatory framework, and lack of incentives to contribute as much as possible to sustainable development are also key impediments to sustainable FDI flows to developing countries.

    To deal with these challenges, more than 110 members of the World Trade Organization (WTO) are negotiating a multilateral framework on investment facilitation for development (IFD).

    In this context, the International Trade Centre (ITC) and the German Development Institute/Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) have launched a project on "Investment Facilitation for Development." The project supports the negotiations by:

     

     

    • building negotiation capacity in developing (including least developed) countries,
    • channelling ground-level and analytical expertise to negotiators,
    • promoting public discussions of issues related to investment facilitation for development.

    The project delivers various sets of complementary activities, including:

    • Capacity-building workshops for the negotiators on good practices in investment facilitation
    • The Commentary Group consisting primarily of experts from investment promotion agencies, investment service providers and the private sector, to provide ground-level insights
    • The Expert Network consisting of academic experts who explore legal, political and economic challenges that need to be addressed to move the negotiations forward.
    • Regular webinars are organized for the IPAs and general public, to provide insights from experts and offer a platform for public dialogue.

    Events & Trainings

    • High-Level Regional Roundtable on Investment Facilitation for Development: How Arab Economies Will Benefit (1 June 2022)
      Programme     Report      Remarks
    • High-Level Regional Roundtable on Investment Facilitation for Development: How African Economies Will Benefit (31 May 2022)
      Programme     Report      Remarks
    • High-Level Regional Roundtable on Investment Facilitation for Development: How Asia and Pacific Economies Will Benefit (19 May 2022)
      Programme     Report      Remarks
    • High-Level Regional Roundtable on Investment Facilitation for Development: How Caribbean Economies Will Benefit (10 May 2022)
      Programme     Report     Remarks
    • High-level Regional Roundtable on the WTO Investment Facilitation for Development Negotiations: Perspectives from Caribbean Economies (February 24, 2021)
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    • High-level Regional Roundtable on Investment Facilitation for Development: The benefits and challenges of international investment facilitation frameworks for development for African economies (March 3-4, 2021)
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    • High-Level Regional Roundtable on the WTO Investment Facilitation for Development Negotiations: Perspectives from Asian and Pacific Economies (March 30, 2021)
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    • High-Level Regional Roundtable on the Benefits and Challenges of a WTO Investment Facilitation Framework for Development for Latin American Economies (May 6, 2021)
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    • 1st capacity building workshop: Concrete measures to facilitate the flow of sustainable FDI (March 11, 2020)
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    • 2nd capacity building workshop: Increasing the development impact of a multilateral framework on investment facilitation for development (May 12, 2020)
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    • 3rd capacity building workshop: Implementation challenges for a multilateral framework on investment facilitation for development (September 23, 2020)
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    • 4th capacity building workshop: Investment Facilitation for Development: Looking Back and Looking Forward (December 11, 2020)
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    • 5th capacity building workshop: Investment Facilitation for Development: Hearing from practitioners (December 11, 2020)
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    • 1st IPA webinar series: Strengthening investment facilitation capacity for development: an overview, based on ‘An Inventory of Concrete Measures to Facilitate the Flow of Sustainable FDI: What? Why? How?’ (February 26, 2021)
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    • 2nd IPA webinar series: Investment facilitation: transparency and streamlining of administrative procedures (March 17 , 2021)
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    • 3rd IPA webinar series: Investment facilitation: promoting linkages and supplier databases (April 13, 2021)
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    • 4th IPA webinar series: Linking outward FDI to inward FDI: the role of home-country measures (May 4, 2021)
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    • 5th IPA webinar series: Incentivizing sustainable foreign direct investment (June 1, 2021)
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    • 6th IPA webinar series: Investment facilitation for development - assessing large-scale investment contracts (July 6, 2021)
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    • 7th IPA webinar series: Implementing Investment Facilitation for Development: What are the next steps? (September 17, 2021)
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    • 8th IPA webinar series: The role of partnerships in facilitating investment (October 12, 2021)
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    • 9th IPA webinar series: Optimizing national and sub-national cooperation on investment facilitation for development (January 25, 2022)
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    • 10th IPA webinar series: What should home countries do to facilitate sustainable outward FDI? (March 10, 2022)
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    • 1st Commentary Group meeting: Investment facilitation measures to include in an IFD Agreement (February 26, 2020)   
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    • 2nd Commentary Group meeting: Measures that increase the development benefits of investment flows (April 7, 2020)
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    • 3rd Commentary Group meeting: Implementation of a an IFD Agreement (May 7, 2020)
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    • 4th Commentary Group meeting: Concrete investment facilitation measures that should be included in an IFD Agreement (July 3, 2020) 
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    • 5th Commentary Group meeting: The “investment lifecycle” - investment facilitation challenges and priority measures (October 27, 2020)
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    • 6th Commentary Group meeting: Investment conflict prevention and management (February 18, 2021)
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    • 7th Commentary Group meeting: Increasing the effectiveness of IPAs to facilitate sustainable FDI flows: key technical assistance needs (May 18, 2021)
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    • 8th Commentary Group meeting: How to facilitate investment that is green, gender-equal, and contributes to generating skills (3Gs) (September 2, 2021)
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    • 9th Commentary Group meeting: Good practices for stakeholder consultations to facilitate investment (November 9, 2021)
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    • 10th Commentary Group meeting: Optimizing national and sub-national cooperation on investment facilitation (January 12, 2022)
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    • 11th Commentary Group meeting: What should governments do to support outward FDI? Helping investors enter new markets (March 2, 2022)
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    • 13th Commentary Group meeting: Key elements of responsible business conduct, with special attention to gender (16 September 2022)
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    • 1st Expert Network meeting:  Lessons learned from investment facilitation provisions in BITs and investment chapters in preferential trade agreements (March 20, 2020) 
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    • 2nd Expert Network meeting: Lessons learned from the negotiation and implementation of the TFA (May 4, 2020)
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    • 3rd Expert Network meeting: The relationship between a multilateral IFD Agreement and international investment agreements (June 26, 2020)
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    • 4th Expert Network meeting: Integrating an IFD Agreement into the WTO (October 6, 2020)
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    • 5th Expert Network meeting: The potential value added of an IFD Agreement (16 February, 2021)
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    • 6th Expert Network meeting: Options to integrate an IFD Agreement into the WTO rulebook (20 May, 2021)
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    • 7th Expert Network meeting: Approaches to implement an IFD Agreement to support domestic investment facilitation reforms (4 October 2021)
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    • 8th Expert Network meeting: What should the work programme of a future WTO Committee on Investment Facilitation for Development look like? (19 November 2021)
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    • 9th Expert Network meeting: Implementing an IFD Agreement: assessing implementation gaps, prioritising domestic policy reforms and identifying technical assistance needs (16 February 2022)
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    • 10th Expert Network meeting: The scope of “investment” under the Investment Facilitation for Development (IFD) Agreement.  (14 April 2022) 
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    • 11th Expert Network meeting: Responsible business conduct as a key component of the WTO Investment Facilitation for Development Agreement (16 June 2022) 
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    • 1st public webinar: The negotiations of an IFD Agreement (February 11, 2020)
      Programme      Report
    • 2nd public webinar: The extent to which an IFD Agreement could contribute to quality FDI flows (March 19, 2020)
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    • 3rd public webinar: Main challenges in implementing an IFD Agreement and how to address them (April 30, 2020)
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    • 4th public webinar: How an IFD Agreement could be integrated into the WTO system and how it relates to other agreements (May 28, 2020)
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    • 5th public webinar: What can we learn from regional initiatives on investment facilitation (October 5, 2020)
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    • 6th public webinar: The potential value-added of an IFD Agreement (January 19, 2021)
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    • 7th public webinar: Investment dispute prevention and management at the national level (February 25, 2021)
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    • ITC Webinar Series: The WTO Investment Facilitation Framework for Development and the Importance of Facilitating Sustainable Investment for MSMEs (May 28, 2021)
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    • 8th public webinar: Implementing an investment facilitation framework – Learning from the TFA experience (September 15, 2021)
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    • WTO Public Forum 2021 Session: Investment Facilitation for Development: Revitalizing Investment for Covid-19 Recovery
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    • 9th public webinar: Increasing the development impact of FDI: creating linkages between foreign investors and the local economy in light of the Covid-19 pandemic (October 26, 2021)
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    • Session at the IISD Trade + Sustainability Hub Virtual Conference: How to ensure a positive development impact of a future Investment Facilitation for Development Agreement? (December 3, 2021)
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    • 10th public webinar: Capacity building for investment facilitation for development (February 1, 2022)
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    • 11th public webinar: Responsible business conduct as a key component of the WTO Investment Facilitation for Development Agreement (23 June 2022) 

      Programme     Report

    • 12th public webinar: Key elements of responsible business conduct in a WTO Investment Facilitation for Development Agreement (30 September 2022)
      Programme      Report 

    Tenth Meeting of the Asia-Pacific Foreign Direct Investment Network: Investment facilitation framework for development: current discussions at regional and multilateral levels (February 23, 2021)
     Programme     Report

    Files & References

    ITC contact

    Quan
    Zhao
    Email
    zhao [at] intracen.org