ESCWA hosted the annual meetings of the Inter-Agency Task Force on International Merchandise Trade Statistics (TF-IMTS) and the Task Force on Statistics of International Trade in Services (TF-SITS) at the UN House, Beirut, on 23-24 March 2010.
The task forces reviewed, among other issues, decisions of other international meetings regarding merchandize trade and trade in services. ESCWA presented in this context its future plans on international trade statistics.
Experts discussed issues related to international trade statistics, such as the 2010 Manuals on these subjects. Discussions also extended to databases on international trade, the latest improvements and plans on the international organizations' respective databases.
The meeting brought together experts on international trade statistics from the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Euro-Stat, International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Customs Organization (WCO), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD), the European Commission, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
Both task forces also held a joint meeting on 25 March and recommended repeating such joint effort for better future coordination and cooperation.