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Trade Logistics in the Arab Region: Challenges and Policy Options

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Logistics is a multifaceted component of trade infrastructure and a key to competitiveness. Most Arab countries could provide cheap trade logistics but remain handicapped by inefficiencies at various stages of the logistics chain. This report looks at trade logistics at the company level in three industries in selected Arab countries. Results show that, due to poor services offered by third parties, companies typically use their own logistics services, which raises costs.

The report shows that inefficient transport infrastructure hinders overall trade performance.  Examples demonstrate that the various elements of logistics must complement one another in order to improve a country’s competitiveness.  Given the difficulty of increasing investment in transport and trade-related infrastructure at a time when public finances are suffering from high deficits, public-private partnerships emerge as the optimal source of funding.