Tools for trade policy analysis

Course overview

The course is geared at improving the awareness and understanding of quantitative methods, which in turn can contribute to evaluations of development and poverty effects of negotiation positions and outcomes as well as domestic trade-related policy choices. The objective of the course is to introduce the participants to key tools of analysis in common use among trade economists. This will cover hands-on exercises with some partial equilibrium models and various trade indicators. The participants will have the chance to extract data from UN COMTRADE and the UNCTAD/World Bank WITS/TRAINS databases and to compute the indicators. Participants will also learn how to interpret the results of their work. Also introduce and familiarise participants with different sources of trade and trade policy data, and the latest available analytical techniques, including partial and general equilibrium models. Particular emphasis will be placed on the methodological aspects, as participants are strongly encouraged to further use and disseminate the knowledge and materials presented in their research activities.

 Course objectives

  • An appreciation of quantitative trade policy analysis,
  • Knowledge of tools for basic trade analysis,
  • A developed global mindset with a grasp of international trade analysis and policy issues with a focus on LDCs,
  • An understanding of the role and nature of the various trade analysis policy tools
  • An enhanced understanding of the analysis of key issues such as bilateral, regional, and multilateral international trade negotiations, agreements, institutions and related processes.
  • How to examine non-tariff measures and attempts to quantify them, and to show that non-tariff measures are increasingly replacing tariffs as major trade barriers.
  • Apply TPA methods on multilateral trade policy changes and RTAs; to learn about trade creation and diversion effects, as well as the benefits provided by trade preferences and the importance of rules of origin, and to discuss the magnitude and potential 


  • How goods are classified in commonly used trade nomenclatures
  • Evaluation of useful trade databases their qualities and pitfalls are
  • Key measurement issues data processing
  • Indices used to assess the nature of foreign trade in terms of structural, sectoral and geographical composition
  • Overview of the wide area of quantitative trade and trade policy analysis and guide towards appropriate quantitative tools and methods.
  • Trade and Trade flow analysis as an instrument for development
  • Simple correlation analysis, including relevant statistical software tools, such as Excel, Stata, etc., and to explain what can be learnt from the trade flows analysis.
  • Gravity models, including the risk of an atheoretical addition of a multitude of variables, and to learn how to construct one’s own gravity model.
  • Accessibility of relevant trade policy data (Trains, Wits, MacMaps, IDB, CTS, etc.), to discuss data quality and to familiarize participants with tools and data from UNCTAD, WTO, ITC and other organizations
  • Trade policy data: non-tariff measures
  • Multilateral trade liberalization and regional trade agreements

Target group

Officials from Trade and Trade Related Ministries and parastatals, officials from Regional Economic Communities, Negotiators, and Regional Integration Practitioners. Ministries of law including attorney general offices, ministries of foreign affairs, ministries of trade and finance etc

2 Weeks

Venue and Date

Venue: Kampala, Uganda
Date: 3 – 14 June 2024 

Course Fees



    Self EmployedEmployedNot Employed

    Puplic/ParastatalPrivateRegional/Civic organisationsAcademic Institution

    Victoria, SeychellesKampala