Global Advocacy > United Nations Development Programme

Trade and human development

UNDP undertakes a variety of advocacy initiatives on trade and human development concerns and in support of MDG achievement at country, regional and global levels in cooperation with other UN agencies and other partners. Advocacy initiatives include research and guidance material on how to make trade work for human development. For example, in cooperation with UNDESA, UNDP publishes the MDG 8 Gap Task Force Report on an annual basis. UNDP’s trade-related publications are available at

Least Developed Countries (LDCs)

The UN recognizes the LDCs as a category of countries that requires concerted support from the international community in response to the challenges these countries face. UNDP works with LDC governments and other stakeholders to prioritize inclusive growth strategies in trade negotiations and trade policies. UNDP also assists LDCs to address vulnerabilities arising from global shocks, climate change and other crises. UNDP contributes to the implementation of the Istanbul Programme of Action for LDCs at the global, regional and country levels including through advocacy in the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) and Aid for Trade (AfT) among other global initiatives.

Landlocked Developing Countries (LLDCs)

UNDP supports the efforts of LLDCs within the framework of the Almaty Programme of Action to develop both trade negotiation and substantive trade capacity in line with national priorities and in specific areas of interest, such as trade facilitation.

Natural Resource Management, including Commodities

Countries with rich natural resource endowments face both opportunities and risks to efficiently manage and allocate revenues from these resources in a manner that is inclusive and socially and environmentally sustainable. Management of natural resources involves complex economic, social and political dimensions as well as the interplay of various actors at the international, national and local levels. Commodity prices have been relatively high in recent years but also volatile. Many developing countries, particularly the low-income countries in the ACP Group, depend on the export of commodities for a significant portion of their foreign trade revenues. As part of the Rio+20 and post-2015 agenda, natural resource management is a key area of work for UNDP in support of sustainable human development, resilience to crisis, inclusive growth and poverty reduction. UNDP’s interventions that are directly or indirectly related to the management of natural resources for human development include a programme to strengthen national capacities for contract negotiations in extractive industries in Africa. The organization is currently engaged in analytical work aimed at examining the linkages between extractive industries, conflict prevention and inclusive growth. UNDP works with the ACP Group, the Common Fund for Commodities (CFC), UNCTAD, and others on advocacy on the commodities problematique, particularly as it relates to trade issues. UNDP supports UNCTAD’s Global Commodities Forum including by participating in the Forum’s Steering Committee.