Regional Workshop to Boost Services Trade under PACER Plus

7 May 2023

APIA, Samoa – The Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations Plus (PACER Plus) is the only Free Trade Agreement in the Pacific which has entered into force, that has a Trade in Services component.

It offers better access and greater certainty for service suppliers in Parties and has the potential to deliver significant gains given the increasing importance of services trade in Pacific economies. For these small and remote economies, services trade can directly contribute to sustainable economic development in the region through generating jobs, facilitating global and regional value chains, and enhancing participation of Pacific micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in those chains.

The PACER Plus Implementation Unit (PPIU) recognises the need for further capacity development support to help Pacific countries understand their obligations and optimise the opportunities provided in the PACER Plus Agreement to increase their participation and benefits from services trade.

The PPIU is therefore hosting a four-day Regional Trade in Services workshop which starts today in Apia, Samoa. Experts in Trade in Services from around the world have been engaged to conduct the training, including from the World Trade Organisation, International Telecommunications Union, United Nations Conference on Trade & Development, World Bank, Asian Development Bank, Pacific Community, and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat.

Experts from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) are also engaged to share lessons learnt from services trade in their region and how it can apply to the Pacific. The workshop is attended by key trade in services officials from Pacific Parties, namely Cook Islands, Kiribati, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.

"The regional workshop will help Pacific countries enhance their participation and benefits from services trade under PACER Plus. It is a significant step towards effective capacity building and implementing Trade in Services under the PACER Plus agreement," said Mr Roy Lagolago, Head of PPIU.


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Photo Caption: Pacific trade officials from PACER Plus parties met at the PPIU office in Apia, Samoa today for the 4-day PACER Plus Trade in Services Workshop.