Trade is a critical pathway for many developing countries to reduce poverty and boost shared prosperity. It supports economic growth and employment, and serves as a gateway to increased investment and local innovation. Exports provide a direct source of income and liquidity to the economy, while imports provide crucial commodities, productive capital equipment, and components/inputs that allow microenterprises and SMEs to produce higher value-added goods and services. For countries that are poorer or affected by conflict, access to trade remains limited. In order to address this, IFC’s Global Trade Finance Program (GTFP) has established innovative ways to engage with the low-income economies classified as International Development Association (IDA) countries and/or Fragile and Conflict Affected States (FCS). The GTFP has a decade-long history of lessons learned from working in these countries, and in this SmartLesson we share a few of those lessons learned from our engagements, specifically from two projects in the renewable energy sector in Nepal and Pakistan.