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Facilitation 2.0: Services and Trade in the Digital Age

Abstract

Although services facilitation is recent topic of discussion at the World Trade Organization, it is not novel in the context of regional trade agreements (RTAs), where provisions on increased transparency, improved administration of procedures, and advanced disciplines on regulatory requirements can often be found. This paper, utilising the conceptual framework of Facilitation 2.0,  explores existing approaches to services facilitation in RTAs and how these regional regulatory experiences can inform WTO members om potential opportunities for convergence at the multilateral level. It also addresses paths to multilateralisation, offering a potential alternative to the negotiation of a self-standing services facilitation agreement.