Global Trade Alert (GTA) - Phase II: Year 2 - Monitoring and Analysis of Crisis-Era Discrimination

This project was conceived in light of the disastrous effects of restraints on trade during the great recession of the 1930s. It is based on the belief that transparency of information will inhibit countries from taking protectionist actions in the wake of the current financial and economic crisis that began in 2008. Trade data provided by the major international institutions such as the United Nations (UN) and the World Trade Organization (WTO), however, are not only ponderous and slow to appear, but also focus on traditional border tax measures that capture only the tip of the iceberg of national measures that distort international economic activity.

Global Trade Alert (GTA), funded under project 105821, endeavors to provide information in real time on national measures that are likely to discriminate against foreign commerce. Building on inputs supplied by regional institutional partners and international experts, suspected protectionist measures are identified, analyzed and ranked according to the severity of their impact using an easy-to-understand "traffic light" system. Global Trade Alert complements and goes beyond WTO and World Bank monitoring initiatives by identifying trading partners affected by such measures, and disseminating its findings through a dedicated website. Since its inception, over 8 000 visitors have returned to the website 15 times or more. The information is especially useful to developing countries, who cannot afford to do their own monitoring of other countries' trade policy.

This grant will support a second phase of Global Trade Alert. Now that the reporting methodology is well established, more emphasis will be placed on producing analytical studies (sometimes with a regional or thematic focus) and disseminating the findings to a wider audience.

Project ID


Project status


Start Date

Thursday, April 14, 2011

End Date

Monday, December 3, 2012


12 months

IDRC Officer

Belhaj Hassine, Nadia

Total funding

CA$ 303,100


Employment and Growth

Project Leader

Vivian Davies

Project Leader

Professor Simon J. Evenett


Centre for Economic Policy Research

Institution Country

United Kingdom

Institution Website