Barriers to Trade in Digitally Enabled Services in the G20



Janos Ferencz, Frédéric Gonzales | OECD Publishing

Digital transformation has enabled easier tradability of traditional services across borders and the emergence of new services that create value from data. But the benefits derived from digitalisation risk being derailed by existing and emerging trade barriers. The OECD Digital Services Trade Restrictiveness Index (Digital STRI) is a new tool that identifies, catalogues, and quantifies cross-cutting barriers between 2014 and 2018 that affect trade in digitally-enabled services across all G20 countries. This index is comprised of a regulatory database of existing trade barriers based on publicly available laws and regulations, as well as composite indices that measure the trade restrictiveness of these policies. The Digital STRI shows that the regulatory environment is complex and diverse across G20 countries, and that there is scope to reduce trade barriers, particularly with respect to communications infrastructure and burdensome measures that affect cross-border data transfers. The Digital STRI can also map regulatory heterogeneity across the G20, and help monitor regulatory convergence, e.g. from regulatory cooperation in trade agreements.

Barriers to trade in digitally enabled services in the G20

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