Canada does not currently have an explicit Aid for Trade policy, but its overall approach is based on its feminist foreign policy, noted a World Trade Organization (WTO) report.
This foreign policy seeks to address systemic barriers that prevent all people, including women and girls in all their diversity, from enjoying the same human rights and having the same opportunities to succeed.
Canada is exploring synergies between the complementary objectives outlined in key policy initiatives, including its Inclusive Trade Agenda, Trade Diversification Strategy and Feminist International Assistance Policy, in particular the Action Area on Growth that Works for All.
Through its FIAP, Canada focuses on the goal of poverty reduction and the empowerment of women and girls, and believes that promoting gender equality is the most effective approach to achieving this goal.
To this end, Canada’s international assistance focuses on six areas of action: Human Dignity; Growth that Works for All; Environment and Climate Action; Inclusive Governance; Peace and Security; and Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women and Girls, which is the central area of focus that cuts across all other areas of action.
The Growth that Works for All action area (through which Canada promotes women’s economic rights and leadership, fosters inclusive markets and entrepreneurship, and promotes resilience and financial security) is the most directly relevant to Aid for Trade considerations.
Together with FIAP, Canada’s inclusive approach to trade seeks to ensure that all segments of society can take advantage of opportunities arising from trade and investment and that trade policies contribute to broader economic, social and environmental policy priorities.
In this context, Canada’s trade agreements include provisions on labour rights, the environment, SMEs, gender equality and indigenous peoples.
Canada also prioritizes the participation of different groups in the economy (groups such as women, indigenous-owned businesses and SMEs) and helps them connect to value chains and global markets.