Over the past two decades, an integral part of some Pacific island countries (PICs’) economic policy rhetoric has been export-led growth. However, despite the policy and technical support provided by many international organizations and bilateral donors, and an abundance of natural resources, their export sectors remain narrow and, with few exceptions, export industries have experienced little growth. Therefore, if these countries are to do better, it is critical to understand the supply- side constraints to export-led growth.
The informal meeting of core Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ARTNeT) research institutions organized by UNESCAP and IDRC in June 2004 in Bangkok highlighted the need for capacity building of research institutions from Least Developed Countries in the region. Llittle research or information is, however, available on what the needs of these research institutions are, their existing trade research capacity and how this differs across countries.