Brenton, Paul

Trade and Regional Integration
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Paul Brenton is Lead Economist in the Trade and Regional Integration Unit of the World Bank. He focuses on analytical and operation work on trade and regional integration. He has led the implementation of World Bank lending operations such as the Great Lakes Trade Facilitation Project in DR Congo, Rwanda and Uganda. He co-authored the joint World Bank-WTO report on The Role of Trade in Ending Poverty and has managed a range of policy-oriented volumes including: De-Fragmenting Africa: Deepening Regional Trade Integration in Goods and Services; Africa can Help Feed Africa; and Carbon Footprints and Food Systems: Do Current Accounting Methodologies Disadvantage Developing Countries? Paul joined the World Bank in 2002, having previously been Senior Research Fellow and Head of the Trade Policy Unit at the Centre for European Policy Studies in Brussels. Before that, he lectured in economics at the University of Birmingham in the UK. He has a PhD in Economics from the University of East Anglia. A collection of Paul’s work has been published in the volume International Trade, Distribution and Development: Empirical Studies of Trade Policies ( ).

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    Streamlining Technical Measured on Medical Products to Combat COVID-19
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-05-21) Jensen, Michael Friis ; Sela, Shane ; Brenton, Paul ; Keyser, John
    The urgency of effective responses to the COVID-19 pandemic and the reliance of many low-income countries on imports of medical products, requires new approaches to regulation of these products. The challenge will be particularly acute for the new tests to identify infection, drugs to alleviate symptoms and machines to aid recovery as well as vaccines that are all expected to be developed in the coming months. Increased transparency, information sharing and greater cooperation among agencies responsible for the approval and inspection of medical goods around the world can help officials in low-income countries implement their mandate more effectively while maximizing efficient access to these commodities. Responsible agencies should focus on implementing technical regulations to protect health and safety, including interception of counterfeit and substandard products, and avoid wasting resources and creating delays by maintaining procedural practices that may be better addressed through alternative risk management strategies or seeking to regulate quality issues, which are best left to the market. Where there is a need to rapidly approve, test and inspect new goods or varieties that have not previously been imported, such as new equipment and medicines, the adoption of mutual recognition and/or equivalence can provide effective mechanisms to avoid regulatory delays while maintaining high levels of safety.