Promoting intra-regional trade in North Africa

Summarises the state of evidence on interventions, what works, with a focus on regional projects


Following the launch of the Aid for Trade (AfT) initiative in 2005, donor spending on interventions to promote developing country trade has grown rapidly. These interventions can be divided into 4 categories:

  1. trade policy and regulation support

  2. traderelated infrastructure support

  3. productive capacity building (including trade development)

  4. trade-related adjustment support.

Interventions to promote trade are typically referred to as AfT projects or programmes in the literature, and this report will employ the same terminology. In the absence of directly relevant literature, this review summarises the state of the evidence on interventions to promote trade and what works, with a particular focus on regional projects. Though the evidence base is limited, it finds that there are emerging best practices in AfT programming. Some of these apply to all AfT interventions, and some are specific to regional projects.

K4D helpdesk reports provide summaries of current research, evidence and lessons learned. This report was commissioned by the UK Department for International Development


Timmis, H. (2017). Promoting intra-regional trade in North Africa. K4D Helpdesk Report. Brighton, UK: Institute of Development Studies.

Promoting intra-regional trade in North Africa

Published 7 December 2017