Global Survey on Trade Facilitation and Paperless Trade Implementation: 2014-2015

[Please visit a separate web page to find the survey Results]

          The United Nations Regional Commissions (UNRCs) including ECA, ECE, ECLAC, ESCAP and ESCWA, in collaboration with UNCTAD, OECD, ITC,OCO and SELA, are conducting a global survey to collect relevant data and information on trade facilitation and paperless trade implementation from their respective member states. Outcomes of the survey will enable the countries to better understand and monitor progress in trade facilitation, support evidence-based policy-making, highlight the needs for capacity building and technical assistance; and provide solutions for further advancing trade facilitation. 

           The global survey represents a key initiative under the framework of the Joint UNRC Approach to Trade Facilitation, which was agreed upon by the Executive Secretaries of the five UNRCs in Beirut, January 2010 to enable the UNRCs to present a joint (global) view on key trade facilitation issues. The questionnaire for the global survey was jointly prepared and finalized by UNRCs and OECD. The data collected will also support the updating of the OECD Trade Facilitation Indicators. 

            The global survey builds on an annual regional survey carried out by ESCAP since 2012; of which, the results have provided its member countries with useful policy reference and cursor on implementation of trade facilitation measures. 

             The global survey covers not only implementation of some important measures included in the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) but also of measures aimed at enabling paperless trade, or the conduct of trade using electronic rather than paper-based data and documentation. Indeed, an ESCAP report found that “next generation” trade facilitation measures have just as much potential as more traditional measures to reduce trade costs and increase intra- and extra-regional trade, with full implementation of cross-border paperless trade expected to generate USD 257 billion of additional export potential annually for the Asia-Pacific region alone. 

              The global survey will be mainly conducted through a questionnaire, supplemented by desk research, and, if necessary, followed up by face-to-face or telephone interviews for data and information clarification and verification. The questionnaire will be sent by the UNRCs to their respective focal government agencies and/or selected experts, starting from September 2014. Compiling the survey responses, verifying data, constructing databases and writing study reports will take place from the time the survey is dispersed to mid-2015. It is expected the final study report to be published by mid-2015. 

              Any experts in different aspects of trade facilitation and paperless trade worldwide are encouraged to participate in the survey. The survey questinnaire is available for download as word files. Please return the filled-in questionnaire to the focal points of UNRCs in your respective region (see "Contacts"), who can also respond your inquiry, if any. If you are not certain about whom you can contact, you are welcome to contact the focal point from ESCAP.


Survey instruments: 

Frequently asked questions (FAQ):  Please click here to see FAQs and answers.

Stage of implementation:  Definitions of stage of implementation are available here.



  • Overall coordination: Mr. Tengfei Wang, Economic Affairs Officer, ESCAP, [email protected]