Rutgers Model ong>Unitedong> ong>Nationsong> 2006 9 The Almaty Programme of Action is a list of priorities to be accomplished by transit states desiring to expand their access to trade, including fundamental policy issues, infrastructure development and maintenance, international trade and trade facilitation, international support measures, and implementation and review. Fundamental policy issues are the issues dealing with customs and international trade partnerships. The second priority, infrastructure development and maintenance, is divided into seven subsections, dealing with different aspects of infrastructure development and maintenance, and calls upon states to improve the maintenance and quality of each mode of transportation to promote smoother and easier trading procedures. Air transport is an excellent method of overcoming the obstacles associated with landlocked nations, however the costs associated with this method of transport limit it to low-bulk and highcost items, and inferior communications systems handicap the quick movement of cargo as they are in transit. UNCTAD recommends the installation of cargo monitoring systems, which “give advance and tracking information on cargo and moving along modes, could significantly reduce delays.” 19 The third priority listed in the Almaty Programme of Action is international trade and trade facilitation, and recommends that nations cooperate by making multilateral trade agreements. The fourth priority lists international support measures, in which foreign states should aid transit developing nations by “providing technical support through partnership … increased foreign direct investment to contribute to the development of transit transport infrastructure.” 20 UNCTAD urges the international community to expend resources to aid economy of these developing nations. In August 2001, the fifth meeting of Governmental Experts from Land-locked and Transit Developing Countries and Representatives of Donor Countries and Financial and Development Institutions offered recommendations used to aid the development of landlocked nations. Some of the conclusions drawn at this meeting relate to the reduction of operating costs and to enhancement of efficiency. For example, one of the 19 Ibid, 9. 20 Ibid, 11.
Rutgers Model ong>Unitedong> ong>Nationsong> 2006 10 recommendations formulated during the convention calls for “the elimination of nonphysical barriers which compromise the competitiveness of trade to and from the landlocked transit countries.” 21 Current Status Recently, the focus on developing LDCs has resulted in a project between the ong>Unitedong> ong>Nationsong> ong>Conferenceong> on Trade and Development, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the ong>Unitedong> ong>Nationsong> Development Fund (UNDP), the World Trade Organization (WTO), International Trade Commission (ITC), and the World Bank. This project, called the International Framework (IF), seeks to facilitate “the coordinated delivery of traderelated technical assistance to LDCs with a view to mainstreaming trade in the national development and poverty reduction strategies of these countries.” 22 In effect, the IF serves to bolster the trade economies of these states by helping them to compete with the rest of the global market, helping to reduce poverty and further developing the economy. The Integrated Framework program began in 1996 by the World Trade Organization primarily to aid forty-nine eligible LDCs. As of 2004, USD $21.2 million have been pledged to IF for the procurement of its goals. 23 The implementation of IF involves three parts, including preparatory activities, a diagnostic phase, and finally the follow up activities. The preparatory activities start with a request from a state to participate in the program, technical review of the application, and finally the establishment of a steering committee to implement the IF framework. 24 Once the first part of the process is cleared, the next step, the diagnostic phase, is carried out, in which a Diagnostic Trade Integration Study (DTIS) “assesses the competitiveness 21 Report of the Fifth Meeting of Governmental Experts from Land-locked and Transit Developing Countries and Representatives of Donor Countries and Financial and Development Institutions. 23 Aug 2001. ong>Unitedong> ong>Nationsong> Resolution 22 “Integrated Framework (IF) Trade-related technical assistance for least developed countries,” UNCTAD, http://www.unctad.org/Templates/webflyer.asp?docid=6055&intItemID=1397&lang=1&mode=highlights (Accessed 20 March 2006) 23 Ibid. 24 “About Integrated Framework. Integrated Framework,” http://www.integratedframework.org/about.htm,” (Accessed 20 March 2006).