Under the special and differentiated treatment provisions, the TFA provides developing countries and LDCs with additional time during which both groups of countries are exempt from the application of the dispute settlement agreement (Article 20). Given the stages of development, the Agreement provides for shorter and longer periods for developing countries, as well as greater flexibility for least developed countries. Shortly before the Ministerial Conference in Bali in December, the development process, with the direct assistance of the Director-General, had resulted in a quasi-clean text. Until now, differences of opinion have been limited to a small number of members who were able to find a solution at a bilateral meeting that allowed them to return as members. The former litigation and discontent groups such as S-D and Customs Cooperation were now in brackets. Although the trade facilitation agreement has not yet been fully finalized by the Ministerial Conference, it was in good shape to be brought to and concluded. The ministerial conference led to new rounds of negotiations and differences of opinion, but the members finally reached agreement on a text on the agreement. After a decade of negotiations, the WTO finally concluded its trade facilitation agreement at the end of 2013, which was extended to 2014.  The TFA aims to expedite trade proceedings, including the transfer, release and release of goods. Its full implementation could boost global trade by $1 trillion per year and reduce trade costs by 14.3% for low-income countries and more than 13% for middle-income countries. Traders in developing and industrialized countries have long stressed the enormous “administrative burden” that still weighs on the cross-border transfer of goods and which is a particular burden for small and medium-sized enterprises. The TFA contains provisions to expedite the transfer, release and release of goods, including goods in transit. Measures are also planned for effective cooperation between customs and other relevant authorities on trade facilitation and tariff compliance.
It also contains provisions for technical assistance and capacity building in this area. The agreement will help to improve transparency, increase opportunities for participation in global value chains and reduce opportunities for corruption. It should be noted that the Democratic People`s Republic of Lao and Malawi are the only LDCs to have provided information on the operation of their single-desk systems (where distributors submit regulatory documents in one place). Section II of the agreement contains innovative special and differentiated treatment provisions that link implementation by developing countries and LDCs to the acquisition of the ability to implement the agreement for the first time in WTO history (see box). Prevent, prevent, prevent: developing countries and LDCs that are willing to adopt the specific and differentiated provisions of the TFA must meet the implementation communication requirements set out in the agreement.