The International Trade Centre (ITC) is the joint agency of the United Nations and the World Trade Organization. Established in 1964, ITC is the only development agency that is fully dedicated to supporting the internationalization of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which are proven to be major job creators and engines of inclusive growth.
ITC works with developing countries and economies in transition to achieve ‘trade impact for good’. It provides knowledge such as trade and market intelligence, technical support and practical capacity building to policymakers, the private sector and trade and investment support organizations as well as linkages to markets.
ITC’s mission is to foster inclusive and sustainable economic development in developing countries and transition economies, and contribute to achieving the United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development. It does this by making businesses in developing countries more competitive in regional and global markets and connecting them to the global trading system.
ITC’s work focuses on areas where ITC can have the greatest impact:
- Strengthening the integration of developing country SMEs into the global economy;
- Improving trade and investment support institutions for the benefit of SMEs; and
- Improving the international competitiveness of SMEs.
ITC prioritizes support to least developed, landlocked developing countries, small island developing states, sub-Saharan Africa, post-conflict countries and small, vulnerable economies.
Economic empowerment of women, young entrepreneurs and support of poor communities, as well as fostering sustainable and green trade are priorities.
Areas of work
ITC’s work is structured under six focus areas:
- Providing trade and market intelligence;
- Building a conducive business environment;
- Strengthening trade and investment support institutions;
- Connecting to international value chains;
- Promoting and mainstreaming inclusive and green trade; and
- Supporting regional economic integration and South-South links.
Within these focus areas, 15 specific programmes carry out activities that are adapted and customized into solutions tailored to the specific needs of its clients.