Filipino firms urged to tap free online tools for overseas expansion

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By Edu Lopez

The International Trade Center (ITC) has urged Filipino enterprises to explore overseas markets using online resources, particularly ITC’s free suite of Web tools designed to make global trade more transparent and facilitate access to new markets.

Credit: UN.org
Credit: UN.org

“According to a 2014 user survey, ITC tools contributed to $126 million in exports and are deemed particularly instrumental to users in least developed countries, where local sources of trade intelligence are often unavailable,” said ITC, a subsidiary of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development that provides trade-related technical assistance.

ITC’s market analysis tools, provided free of charge due to support from the World Bank, the European Commission, and funders of the ITC’s Trust Fund, are accessible on this site.

Information is categorized into four categories. The Trade Map provides a comprehensive trade database and presents indicators on export performance, international demand, alternative markets, and competition for the product.

The Market Access Map provides information on applied customs tariffs, including Most Favored Nation tariffs and unilateral and trade agreement preferences. The application also covers tariff rate quotas, trade remedies, rules of origin, plus the corresponding certificates, bound tariffs of WTO members, non-tariff measures, and trade flows.

The Investment Map combines statistics on foreign direct investment and international trade, tariff data, and the activities of multinational firms into an interactive tool that allows analysis by country, trading partner, and sector.

The Standards Map is ITC’s detailed database on private standards and presents academic, scientific, and research papers and articles that discuss private standards issues in global value chains.

The Procurement Map seeks to help businesses, especially small and medium-sized enterprises, bid for public procurement contracts around the world. It includes a country-by-country breakdown of up to 100,000 public tenders.

The Trade Competitiveness Map provides national export performance and national import profiles for around 240 countries and territories. It also offers a trade performance index by key export sectors grouped into 14 clusters.

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