Cross-border trade in the pre- and post-pandemic environment: Evidence from Malawi, the United Republic of Tanzania and Zambia

This report presents an assessment of capacity-building activities conducted by UNCTAD in Malawi, the United Republic of Tanzania and Zambia aimed at small-scale and informal cross-border traders, mainly women. It provides an original picture of informal and small-scale cross-border trade in the pre-and post-pandemic environment.


The assessment is based on the findings of interviews conducted with former training participants, and an online survey of government officials and representatives of cross border trade associations who were involved in the planning and delivery of UNCTAD training programme. The report also relies on previous analytical work carried out by UNCTAD on this topic.

Interventions were carried out as part of two projects: the Development Account project “Informal Cross-border Trade for the Empowerment of Women, Economic Development, and Regional Integration in Southern and Eastern Africa”, implemented during 2016-2019, and the Development Account project “Global Initiative towards post-Covid-19 Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises sector”, implemented during 2020-2021.

The report is available in the following link: