Global Gateway: EU remains the leading global provider of aid for trade

By European Commission

Global Gateway: EU remains the leading global provider of aid for trade

The European Union remains the world’s biggest contributor of Aid for Trade, committing over €18 billion in 2021, according to the latest EU Aid for Trade Progress Report published. This amount represents 47% of all Aid for Trade originating from bilateral and multilateral sources, sustaining the growth trajectory from a 33% contribution in 2018.

European Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen said: “Trade can be an important accelerator for development. The EU’s traditionally done very well on this front, and I am happy to see that we are once again a top Aid for Trade contributor. Through our Global Gateway investment strategy, we work to create an enabling environment for trade and sustainable growth.”

The EU’s Aid for Trade policies aim to promote sustainable growth in partner countries and assist them with their integration into the global economy. Programs funded by the EU are complemented by the very generous General System of Preferences scheme and asymmetrical trade agreements that give broad market access to exporting partner countries.

As of June 2023, 123 partner countries and territories that are eligible for EU official development assistance have preferential access to the EU market, 62 through a preferential trade agreement in force, and 61 through one of the three unilateral EU preferential trade schemes under the Generalised Scheme of Preferences. Only 19 partner countries have no preferential or reciprocal trade preferences with the EU.

Geographically most EU Collective Aid for Trade goes to Africa, followed by Asia and Europe.