Arab Economic Integration for sustainable development (AEISD)

Arab Economic Integration for sustainable development (AEISD)

UNDP launched the AEISD project in 2017 to accelerate the effects of trade reforms for job creation, increased stability and inclusiveness, with active engagement of women and youth as main resources to achieve these goals in the Arab region.

The project is based on three interconnected areas of work:

1- It provides technical assistance to the League of Arab States (LAS) and member states of Pan Arab Free Trade Area (PAFTA) in working towards a deepened integration, with the main objective of making trade an engine for inclusive and sustainable growth in the region. The project activities focus on the modernization of trade policies and facilitate policy dialogue and cooperation among governments and between them and the private sector.

2- It supports strengthening connectivity among regional economies, favoring partnerships withthe private sector. The project activities aim at facilitating and speeding up border-crossings and customs procedures in order to reduce time of processing and increase revenue.

3- It promotes women’s role in trade policy-making to further regional cooperation and economic integration. Through studies and regional workshops, the project aims at tackling the subject of women’s access to information, production factors, financial resources as well as business and job opportunities. The project also works on the promotion of good governance- an essential component for regional economic integration.

The project aims to promotes policy reforms and modernization of border management practices and custom procedures through the establishment of the National Single Window system (NSW), which leverages data exchange methodologies and other innovative technologies to increase and speed up trade flows. The NSW involves a transformation process in cross border operations’ management modalities and promotion of partnership among key players within the supply and value chains, through synchronized and digitalized processing of documents.

Six governmental agencies were trained by AEISD experts and founders of the Indonesian National Single Window to collaborate towards the establishment of Jordanian NSW to increase its trade efficiency by modernizing and digitalizing customs procedures, launched in January 2018. Encouraging results were obtained with significant reduction of time needed for clearance of goods at the Aqaba port, more efficiency in regulatory control and closer partnership with the private sector. The project also has supported Egypt to set up a NSW and build relevant capacity to put the digital platform to the service of the public, including businesses and industries.

The project has worked with many different countries in the Arab region to build inclusive and strong societies with substantial transformation of regional cooperation, guided by improved transparency and policy coordination. for lasting change . Through a coordinated intervention that revolves around designing and developing trade policies, building local expertise and conducting consultations with key stakeholders, and in adopting new policy platforms to

strengthening regional economic integration and incentivize the creation of business opportunities and jobs for Arab citizens.

“At UNDP, we are working to ensure that economies in the Arab region can harness digital technologies to eradicate poverty and boost economic growth. Supporting policymakers to move towards embracing this change is a priority for UNDP’s work in the region.”- Quang Anh Le, UNDP Chief Technical Advisor for the regional project on trade and economic integration in the Arab states region (AEISD).