Ecommerce is reshaping the patterns, players, and possibilities of international trade. It is opening new trade opportunities for companies of all sizes and across sectors. Yet numerous challenges need to be overcome for digitization to translate into trade and growth gains especially in developing countries, such as poor Internet connectivity, populations’ limited digital skills, logistics and market access bottlenecks specific to ecommerce shipments, and digital policy and regulatory issues.
Lack of systematic and actionable data on key ecommerce-specific policy issues and the severity of challenges facing online traders complicates developing countries and aid agencies’ design and prioritization of public policies and investments in ecommerce development. Our new Ecommerce Development Survey and Index Nextrade created for USAID by Nextrade Group fills this gap. More data for more countries will be produced in 2018 with funding from World Bank.