Ridden with a wide range of barriers other than tariffs, South Asia’s efforts to enhance intra-regional trade by reducing tariffs are under the threat of subversion by Non-Tariff Barriers. The fact that regional trade has failed to rise to the expected levels and stagnated at a level far below its true potential for the past two decades, despite actively pursuing trade liberalization through a formal legal and institutional system, indicates certain systemic shortcomings in dealing with NTBs. In order to understand the extent and magnitude of NTBs and the need for NTB reforms in South Asia, a research study entitled ‘Promoting Participatory Approaches for Removing Regional Trade Barriers in South Asia’ was undertaken by CUTS with the support of the Asia Foundation. IPS was the Sri Lankan partner for the project and carried out case studies on the incidence of NTBs affecting Sri Lankan exporters and importers as well as a series of stakeholder consultations with government officials, civil society representatives and industry chamber.
Promoting Participatory Approaches for Removing Regional Trade Barriers in South Asia