The Trade Bloc Insights section of globalEDGE provides in-depth analyses and resources organized by major global trade blocs. Discover statistics and resources to inform you about trade agreements and their economic impact. Read through a detailed history of each trade bloc, a key dates timeline, and a list of member countries for each trade agreement.
Last reviewed by globalEDGE on: February 20, 2015
The African Union is an organization for regional, social, and economic cooperation. The website provides detailed information about all major economic cooperation programs in Africa. The information includes the participating countries, official documents, major events, and press releases.
The Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) website provides detailed information about the foundation and structure of the organization. It also provides legal documents, press releases, publications, and statistics of the organization, as well as information about its major activities.
The East African Community (EAC) website provides detailed information about the history, structure, and participating countries of the organization. Also, social and economic cooperation programs and activities within the community are included. In addition, the site provides news and publications regarding the latest community developments.
The European Free Trade Association (EFTA) is an international organization composed of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland. The EFTA is tasked with promoting free trade and economic integration. Information is provided on the relationship between the EFTA and the European Economic Area. Trade statistics on EFTA member countries, legal texts, and various publications are also available.
The Global Preferential Trade Agreements Database (GPTAD) provides information on trade agreements from around the world. Developed jointly by the World Bank and the Center for International Business at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College, the database contains text-searchable versions of all bilateral, free trade, and custom union agreements since June, 1, 2003.
Executive Briefing: CAFTA was signed in 2004 in spite of substantial opposition to it in the Dominican Republic and Central America. Supporters say CAFTA will encourage each member to find and rely on its comparative advantage. However, critics use historical evidence to illustrate that CAFTA's provisions are harmful, both financially and environmentally, to citizens of Central America and the Dominican Republic. Opens in PDF format.
The Joint Commercial Commission (JCC) is an agreement signed by the United States and thirteen independent Pacific island nations to promote mutually beneficial commercial and economic relations. The site provides many links designed to provide information on investment relations, trade flows, and economic development projects
for countries within the agreement. Country information for the Pacific island nations involved in the agreement is also listed.
Among other goals, the Andean Community (CAN) strives for the development and integration of member countries in Latin America and for progress in the standard of living. The website provides information on member countries, economic policies, treaties and legislation, trade in goods and services, and much more. While some publications must be purchased, access to documents including the declarations of the CAN is free. Only available in Spanish.
This is the official website of MERCOSUR. a customs union incorporating the countries of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Venezuela. Available only in Spanish or Portuguese.
The NAFTA Secretariat, which administers the North American Free Trade Agreement dispute resolution processes, explains the requirements and processes of dispute settlement through this web site. Also, the site provides information about NAFTA itself.
Free Trade Agreements is a sub-section of the official Organization of American State's Foreign Trade Information System (SICE) website. It offers documents of the specific trade agreements as well as other related topics. In addition, information on customs unions and preferential agreements is available.
The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC ) site offers information about regional cooperation in South Asian countries, including cooperation in the areas of agriculture and rural, biotechnology, energy, environment, and trade and finance. SAARC offers the latest news, press releases, and publications of the organization. It also allows readers to download the declarations of all its summits.
The Southern African Development Community (SADC) site provides information regarding the structure and legal documents of the organization, and of the participating countries. Available thematic sub-sections include food, agricultural, and natural resources; infrastructure and services; politics, defense, and security; social and human development; and economic development.
Union Economique et Monetaire Ouest Africaine (UEMOA) is composed of Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d'Ivoire, Mali, Guinea-Bissau, Niger, Senegal, and Togo. Its purpose is to unite members through competition in an open market. The website contains overall information on UEMOA as well as press releases and publications that it has produced. Available only in French.
Written by the World Bank in 2005, this report details the effects of trade on eight RTAs including NAFTA, AFTA, SADC, EAC, Mercosur, COMESA, ECOWAS, and SAPTA. It uses statistics from 1960 - 2000 to detail the effect RTAs have had on global trade and intergroup trade, sometimes focusing on one country’s economic stand point. Report opens as a pdf.