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Welcome to the Swedish National Board of Trade

The National Board of Trade is the Swedish governmental agency dealing with foreign trade, the Internal Market and trade policy. The Board provides the Government with analyses and recommendations. You find more information about The National Board of Trade on this web site.

 

Latest News

Technical Barriers to Trade core issue in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)

Free movement of goods and services are increasingly dependent on preventing and eliminating technical barriers. Therefore, technical barriers to trade between the EU and the U.S. are a key issue in the ongoing free trade agreement negotiations, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). This is also established in the National Board of Trade's new report "Regulatory Co-operation and Technical Barriers to Trade within Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)".

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No Transfer, No Trade – the Importance of Cross-Border Data Transfers for Companies Based in Sweden

Today, business and trade is totally dependent on data flows. With a new report we hope to improve the understanding of the issue of data transfers, especially how companies use data transfers as part of their everyday trade and thus how data protection and regulations affect their business opportunities.

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Just Add Services - a case study on servicification and the agri-food sector

Companies in the agri-food industry are as dependent on services as the manufacturing industry is. Without services, no food can be produced or reach the dinner table. These are findings from a study by the National Board of Trade on the food company Aromatic.

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Bilateral Investment Treaties – how they work

When a Swedish company invests abroad, it often takes more risks than it would if it had invested in Sweden. One way of reducing uncertainty among foreign investors is for countries to guarantee a certain amount of investment protection. Investment Protection Treaties are commonly known as Bilateral Investment Treaties (BITs). A new paper from The National Board of Trade gives a brief introduction to what BITs are and how they work.

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Easier for EU citizens with private health insurance to obtain a personal identity number

It will now be easier for EU citizens with private health insurance to be assigned personal identity numbers. As the personal identity number is associated with a number of important functions and services in Sweden, these people will now have a better chance of accessing Swedish society.

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Without services, global value chains will grind to a halt

Technological developments create new opportunities for trade in services. More and more service industries are being divided into different tasks that are conducted in different countries. Products that were previously sold in shops are now sold as online services. Some are not even available as physical products, rather they are sold purely in digital format online. The Swedish video game Minecraft is one example of this development. The game is produced by Mojang in Stockholm and is sold digitally all over the world. Parts of the game production, distribution and many support services are managed outside of Sweden.

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More services in the manufacturing industry present challenges to trade policy

Services are growing ever more important for manufacturing companies. Services are being used, bought and sold more than ever before. The differences between goods and services in companies' business offerings are being eroded. However, trade policy has not kept up with developments. This is shown by a new study from the Swedish National Board of Trade.

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E-commerce brings new opportunities – and new trade barriers

The internet and e-commerce are creating new opportunities for international trade. The geographic distance between buyer and seller is becoming less important, and companies can now reach consumers in foreign markets in ways that were previously impossible. However, as e-commerce grows and creates new opportunities, new trade barriers are also appearing. In a new report, the Swedish National Board of Trade has mapped the barriers that companies encounter in e-commerce outside the EU.

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Handbook for Swedish embassies oe expn thort of processed food and agricultural products

In cooperation with a number of government agencies, the Swedish National Board of Trade launched a practical handbook describing how Sweden works with SPS-related export barriers at the start of 2012. Now the publication has also been translated into English.

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How to improve the EU Internal Market

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the EU Internal Market. People have had the chance to live and study in other EU member states and trade across borders has become easier. But freedom of movement can be further enhanced, notes the National Board of Trade, and points out several areas where improvements can be made.

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Cloud computing has resulted in increases in international specialisation
The number of services available over the internet via "the Cloud" is increasing. Cloud services offer companies new service solutions primarily in administration and IT. A new form of trade in services is created. At the same time, existing rules can hamper trade when large amounts of data pass national borders. The formulation of laws, differences between legal systems and in some cases uncertainty regarding which legal system is applicable can create problems. The Swedish National Board of Trade has produced an introduction to cloud services in international trade.

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Business Reality and Trade Policy – Closing the Gap

The trend towards global value chains in international trade has created a growing gap between business reality and trade policy. While the nature of trade has changed, trade regulation in the EU and other OECD economies has remained largely the same. So far this aspect of the debate has not received the attention it deserves. As a result, the implications for trade policy have not been thoroughly discussed.

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Chinese export restrictions on raw materials in breach with WTO rules

The Appellate Body of the WTO announced that China's export measures on various raw materials are in breach with WTO rules. Industries affected by the outcome include the chemical, steel and non-ferrous metal industries.

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The EU's protective tariffs prevent normal competition

The National Board of Trade observes in a new investigation that price dumping is evaluated differently depending on whether the product is manufactured in the EU or imported from third countries. What is considered to be price dumping when imported is considered normal competition for a product manufactured in the EU. This fact affects countries' abilities to compete on equal terms in the European market.

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Recent Studies

Minecraft Brick by Brick - A Case Study of a Global Services Value Chain

The discussion about global value chains focuses primarily on goods production. However, more and more services are broken up into different tasks and spread internationally. Services are becoming global value chains in their own right. The Swedish video game Minecraft is an example of a global services value chain. The game is produced by Mojang in Stockholm and is sold digitally all over the world. The production and sale of Minecraft constitutes a global service value chain, where different aspects are conducted by operators in various countries. This report maps the global value chain of Minecraft. It also looks at the Swedish video game sector to exemplify how different companies set up their services value chains. Finally, the report discusses trade policy implications of these services value chains.
Download the paper (PDF)

Global Value Chains and Services - An Introduction

The report discusses the role of services in global value chains. Services are indispensable in all global value chains (GVCs) . GVCs depend on enabling services for their existence and functioning. Pure services value chains with a global remit are also increasingly being created. This report aims to link the policy discussions on services in GVCs to the Board’s previous work on the servicification of manufacturing companies. Those companies are increasingly buying, producing, selling and exporting services, thus blurring the line between goods and services companies. In this publication, we discuss how the policy conclusions from the Board’s studies on servicification are also relevant in the GVC context.
Download the paper (PDF)

Potential Effects from an EU–US Free Trade Agreement – Sweden in Focus

In this study the National Board of Trade analyses potential economic effects from a free trade agreement (FTA) between the EU and the US, with a particular focus on the effects on Sweden. The analysis is based on an economic simulation model over the world economy.

The results from the simulation indicate positive effects on trade and national income in both EU and the US. In particular, the results suggest an important increase in the bilateral trade between the EU and the US. Since import tariff levels in general are low between the two areas, the largest estimated gains from the simulation derive from reducing costs that arise because of differences in rules and standards in the EU and the US, so called non-tariff barriers (NTBs).
Download the paper (PDF)


The Internal Market in a Global Context

The paper explores the relationship between the EU internal market and external trade policies. Improved policy coherence between internal and external policies, providing for increased economic exchange with third countries, can contribute to more favourable conditions for EU businesses and in the long run to a more competitive European economy.
Download the paper (PDF)

A longer version of the paper was prepared for and presented at a seminar organised by the European Commission on January 2012. Download the extended version of the paper (PDF)

Everybody is in Services - The Impact of Servification in Manufacturing on Trade and Trade Policy

Manufacturing firms increasingly use, produce and sell services. The “servicification” of manufacturing is important for firms’ competitiveness. This report describes these changes in the economy, focusing on Sweden, and discusses the implications for trade and trade policy. The main conclusion is that trade policy needs to focus on “goods and services”, rather than “goods or services”, as is still often the case.
Download the paper (PDF)


E-commerce – New Opportunities, New Barriers

The internet and e-commerce are creating new opportunities for international trade. The geographic distance between buyer and seller is becoming less important, and companies can now reach consumers in foreign markets in ways that were previously impossible. However, as e-commerce grows and creates new opportunities, new trade barriers are also appearing.The study is based on interviews with Swedish companies, and identifies the barriers they encounter in their e-commerce business in countries outside the EU.
Download the paper 


Measures For a Better Functioning Internal Market
In this report the National Board of Trade presents areas on the EU's internal market where the free movement can be improved. The Board's assessment is that further measures within these areas would lead to a more integrated and better functioning internal market.

The measures that are proposed, and which are discussed in the report, stretch across different areas and sectors and differ in terms of nature of the problem and the actors that could possibly solve it. The proposals may involve existing EU provisions that need to be correctly applied by the authorities in the Member States, but they might also relate to the need to clarify or change existing EU legislation, or enact new legislation.
Download the paper (PDF)


How Borderless is the Cloud? An introduction to cloud computing
The number of services available over the internet via "the Cloud" is increasing. Cloud services offer companies new service solutions primarily in administration and IT. A new form of trade in services is created. At the same time, existing rules can hamper trade when large amounts of data pass national borders. The formulation of laws, differences between legal systems and in some cases uncertainty regarding which legal system is applicable can create problems. The Swedish National Board of Trade has produced an introduction to cloud services in international trade.
Download the paper (PDF)


Sweden's Work with SPS-related Export Barriers – A guide for Swedish Embassies on exports of processed food and agricultural products
This guide briefly describes how Swedish ministries and agencies are working together to solve problems that Swedish exporters face in countries outside the EU, due to the design or implementation of legislation on food safety or animal and plant health in these countries. In the guide it is also discussed what the staff at Swedish embassies abroad can do to help solve these export problems.


Download the paper (PDF)


Do EU Producers and the EU Economy Really Benefit from Anti-Dumping Policy?
This paper examines the effects of the European Union (EU) anti-dumping duties in order to assess their effectiveness and efficiency. The results suggest that EU anti-dumping duties do provide some protection for EU producers; however, the level of this protection is moderate. Those who gain most from the duties that have been introduced are, instead, the producers in third countries who are not subject to anti-dumping duties.
Furthermore, the study shows that anti-dumping protection comes at rather a high price for users and consum­ers in the EU. Our calculations suggest that for every one euro gained in the protected sector, users and consumers pay, on average, 4.5 euros more as a result of higher prices and duties.
Download the paper (PDF)


Global Value Chains in EU Anti-Dumping Practice
Global value chains have made trade-in intermediate goods an increasingly important part of manufacturing in the EU. Despite this, more than two-thirds of the EU's anti-dumping measures are aimed at intermediate goods. This report examines EU anti-dumping policy with regard to its impact on users of goods that are subject to anti-dumping measures. In particular, this is done in light of the fact that the interest of industrial users has not once influenced the outcome of an anti-dumping proceeding (at least not since 1998).
Download the paper (PDF)


Possible Effects of the Services Directive

This report analyses the economic effects of the Services Directive. The Services Directive has been in force since 2010 and is designed to facilitate services trade by removing unnecessary and discriminating rules and simplifying remaining rules in the EU Internal Market. We examine four services categories and estimate that trade in these services could increase by up to 50 percent if three regulations were deregulated according to the Services Directive’s ambition.
Download the paper (PDF)


Business Reality and Trade Policy – Closing the Gap
In a new report by the National Board of Trade, global value chains are analyzed in relation to trade policy. We note, for example, that global value chains have made EU rules of origin increasingly out of touch with the world in which businesses operate. The EU also continues to charge import duties on goods that serve as inputs to the EU's own industry. With such a trade policy the EU shoots itself in the foot by increasing costs and reducing the competitiveness of European manufacturers.
Download the paper (PDF)


Dumping or Competition?

The paper identifies that “dumping” according to the WTO definition is taking place within the EU, and that this intra-EU “dumping” is considered as a case of normal competition, as no remedies are taken. It is claimed that the EU anti-dumping regulation must be revised with regard to several aspects if the objective is to establish efficient competition. In the absence of a reformed anti-dumping regulation, the anti-dumping measures will only contribute to unfair competition where the EU industry will be protected to the detriment of the European consumers.
Download the paper (PDF)

You find the full version of the paper in the report Paving the Way for Unfair Competition: The Imposition of Anti-Dumping Duties on Ceramic Tiles from China.

Anti-dumping or Unjustified Protection?

The paper analyzes the imposition of EU anti-dumping duties on imports of ceramic tiles from China from a critical perspective. It is claimed that the antidumping measures on ceramic tiles from China are inappropriate. It is not an obvious case of dumping, it is not an obvious case of injury, and the injury that is claimed is most likely not caused by the alleged “dumping”. Accordingly, it is difficult to identify causality. In addition, it is difficult to argue that it would be in the EU interest to impose the antidumping measures.
Download the paper (PDF)

You find the full version of the paper in the report Paving the Way for Unfair Competition: The Imposition of Anti-Dumping Duties on Ceramic Tiles from China.

New Report: Paving the Way for Unfair Competition: The Imposition of EU Anti-Dumping Duties on Ceramic Tiles from China

The report analyzes the imposition of EU anti-dumping duties on imports of ceramic tiles from China from a critical perspective. The analysis argues that the EU anti-dumping regulation must be revised with regard to several aspects if the objective is to establish efficient competition. In the absence of a reformed anti-dumping regulation, the anti-dumping measures will only contribute to unfair competition where the EU industry will be protected to the detriment of the European consumers.
Download the report (PDF)

New Report: Cross-border Public Procurement - an EU Perspective

The purpose of this study is to provide an overview of the current state of the regulatory and economic development in cross-border procurement. The nature of cross-border procurement is illustrated with two examples from public services: the first from a hospital and the second from an underground system. For this purpose, the first section elaborates on the concept of cross-border procurement, outlines the international disciplines on public procurement and studies some of the existing literature on the economic significance of cross-border procurement. The second section contains our two case studies.
Download the report (PDF)

 

National Board of Trade, Box 6803, 113 86 Stockholm
Visiting address: Drottninggatan 89
Phone: +46-8-690 48 00. Fax: +46-8-30 67 59 kommersk...@kommers.se