Simply put, when considering optimal trade policy and trade related regulatory approaches, government officers need to have sufficient knowledge on the often complex international trading and national trade-related regulatory environment. A major way in which to advance such knowledge is through ongoing high level training on these issues, as well as high-level research on targeted issues.
Currently the Pakistan Institute of Trade and Development (PITAD) has been charged with the responsibility of providing policy training and research to the ministries and government agencies. In 2008, the institute was restructured to better fulfil this mandate. Through the MoC’s Strategic Trade Policy Framework (STPF), PITAD has been tasked with providing knowledge-based support to various stakeholders and to evaluate the implementing of STPF. Accordingly the mandate of the Institute was expanded and new areas such as policy research, knowledge management plate form, aid effectiveness, and executive development programmes were begun besides strengthening the traditional role of trade related training.
However, a strategic approach is needed to develop or implement the achievement of these goals. The areas in most need of support, and are thus targeted for specific activities under Component 1 are:
- A better understanding of PITAD’s constituencies needs
- Upgrading and development of PITAD’s training modules (particular Specialised Training Programme)
- Continual knowledge advancement of staff on trade policy issues
- Better linkages with other institutions (joint research/assistance in training)
- More reflexive approach in order to respond to the immediate needs of Government (for example, to perform ad-hoc lectures/trainings on pressing issues)
Under Component 1, PITAD and other research institutes will benefit from training and technical assistance from the Switzerland based World Trade Institute- an internationally recognised leading provider of teaching, training, consulting and research in the field of International Trade Regulation. The capacity strengthening of other research institutes is expected to complement the strengthening of PITAD (curriculum development and research) as well as broaden the base of expertise on trade policy issues within Pakistan.