Building Consensus

…bringing together stakeholders to raise awareness, build consensus, and increase the development orientation in technical assistance and capacity building on trade and investment

Expanding Exports and Building Consensus on Services Reforms and Negotiations: a Coalition of Service Industries in Ghana

Alisa Hotel – Accra, Ghana
15-16 June 2010

Part of the difficulty in harnessing services reforms and negotiations to promote development results stems from the expansive nature of the sector.  In reality there is no single ‘services sector’ to speak of, but rather a collection of sectors covering significant swathes of economic activity and impacting a diverse range of stakeholders.  Bringing these stakeholders together to strengthen the sectors, expand exports and more generally help feed their interests into reform and negotiating processes has proven challenging, both for governments and the private sector.

In response to this perceived gap, there has been a recent move to pool together a range of cross-sectoral associations, bodies and firms into national and regional services coalitions.  Such national and regional (and global) groupings can lend additional weight to positions being taken and help further promote private sector interests towards exporting more services, as well as services reforms and negotiations, etc.

Despite the acknowledged role such coalitions can and should play, their presence in Africa is virtually non-existent, with Ghana being no exception. 

As such, the broader objective of this workshop was to help create awareness about the role of services coalitions in expanding exports and pursuing services reforms and negotiations, as well as to promote information and knowledge sharing amongst stakeholders of national/regional experiences with services associations.  Building consensus for such coalitions was thus a key expected outcome.  By helping to elaborate on how such coalitions can be properly situated within the existing institutional landscape, the ultimate aim was to help catalyze the formation of a national coalition in Ghana.

Aide Memoire/Agenda

Participants List



Final Report