Section 1 About

1.1 Project goals

Open Trade Statistics is an independent project that values reproducible research and provides tidy trade data. This project advocates for openness and collaboration, so the contribution is focused on:

  • Releasing all the source code on GitHub
  • Sharing curated data (direct download and API)
  • Pull requests and new ideas are always welcome

The ultimate goal of this project is to ease data analysis and promote a reproducibility culture. You can contact me at

1.2 Data sources and availability

All of the product data shown on the OTS site is classified using either SITC (Standard International Trade Classification) or HS (Harmonized System), the raw data was obtained from UN COMTRADE and its under their authorization that we share claned versions of the original raw datasets.

We used different trade classifications according to the data availability.

Classification Availability
HS rev 1992 1988 – 2020
SITC rev 2 1976 – 1976
SITC rev 1 1962 – 1976

These datasets were used all together in order to create a unified data series for the period 1962-2017 with all products classified under HS rev 2007.

To adjust for inflation (see the details in the R package), I also obtained GDP and inflation data from the World Bank.

1.3 Code of Conduct

Before you proceed to download the data, please read this carefully.

No matter your gender, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity, religion (or lack thereof), or technology choices you are able to use this data for any non-commercial purpose, including academic.

Our software is released under Apache 2.0 license but all the data is under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Commercial purposes are strictly out of the boundaries of what you can do with this data according to UN Comtrade dissemination clauses.

Except where otherwise noted, content on this site is licensed under the Creative Commons BY-NC 4.0 License. Besides CC-BY-NC, when downloading datasets you also agree to the usage conditions explained both to UN Comtrade Online Usage Agreement.

The dashboard and R package are released under GNU General Public License v3.0, which follow the license recommendations from The R Project.

1.4 Open Source Sponsorships

This project is hosted on DigitalOcean as a part of the Open Source Sponsorships. If you register with this link, you’ll get free credits to try DigitalOcean and we also get credits for the project:

Referral Link