Timeline: 2014 – 2015
Donors: Germany (GIZ) , Trade Policy and Promotion Fund
Mongolia is landlocked developing economy seeking to fully integrate into the world trading system. As a staunch supporter of multilateralism, the country is famous for being the sole Member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) not a party to any kind of preferential trade agreement (PTA). Mongolia has however recently concluded negotiations to become the seventh member of the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement and is in the process of finalising its first bilateral PTA negotiations (the Japan-Mongolia Economic Partnership Agreement).
With respect to trade policy formulation, the Government of Mongolia is clearly at a crossroads and is in great need of clarifying and defining further what kind of strategy it would adopt concerning its participation in regional integration schemes and preferential trade agreements. In the last couple of years, the abundance of mineral resources and the country’s great economic potential have attracted considerable interests from many trading partners. Some of them have already approached the Mongolian Government to engage in free trade negotiations (notably China, South Korea and the European Free Trade Association).
“GIZ, therefore commissioned IDEAS Centre to draft as a first step a background paper on Mongolia’s various alternatives to join preferential trading schemes”
The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) is implementing a project within the Trade Policy and Trade Promotion Fund to support Mongolia in its trade integration efforts. GIZ, therefore commissioned IDEAS Centre to draft as a first step a background paper on Mongolia’s various alternatives to join preferential trading schemes (whether regional or bilateral). The paper is aiming at raising awareness and sparking a debate on the possible options that the Government of Mongolia might have with respect to joining preferential trading schemes as well as what might be needed to define a strategy for regional and preferential trade negotiations.
Provided the Mongolian Government decides to design a concise approach to preferential trade negotiations, a workshop could be foreseen at the end of 2014 to discuss the various options that Mongolia has and their related implications.