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The biennial Trade and Sustainable Development Symposium, organised by the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) and held alongside the WTO ministerial conference for over a decade, is the leading multi-stakeholder platform for intellectual enquiry and dialogue on sustainable development and the global trade and investment system. It acts as an inclusive platform outside of the WTO negotiating setting for sharing ideas, engaging in dialogue, and influencing trade policy negotiations. Drawing in participants from government, business and civil society, the Symposium helps to maintain and elaborate a global vision of sustainable development in trade and investment policymaking.
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Tuesday, December 12 • 3:15pm - 4:45pm
Making Trade Work for Climate Action - a Role for the G20

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Sixteen of the seventeen warmest years on record have occurred since 2001, with 2016 being the hottest of them. Sea ice is melting and oceans are heating, leading to rising sea levels which threaten the very existence of many low-lying countries. Extreme weather events are becoming more frequent and more intense.

In 2015, the world’s nations came together under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and agreed to limit average global temperature increases to well below 2˚C. Yet, country pledges currently don’t add up; a recent report by UNEP indicates that we are heading for a temperature increase of 3.2 ˚C by the end of the century.

Against this backdrop, it is crucial that every effort is made to scale up climate action. Trade has an important role to play in this regard. For example, as manufacturing of clean energy goods is currently concentrated in a handful of countries, trade is the means to allow all countries to access these technologies and transition to a cleaner energy mix. Moreover, international trade can make it possible to favour consumption of low carbon goods. Yet, trade barriers remain in the area and there is no coherent strategy for addressing them.

At the same time, cooperation on international trade rules is crucial so as not to undermine countries’ efforts as they implement their climate policies. For example, carbon pricing policies could, if unmatched, distort competitiveness, ultimately to the detriment of climate action. There is also a need to address climate policies in the transport sector, which have obvious trade links.

How to go about generating momentum for action on trade and climate change? Attempts to even host a discussion about climate change in the WTO don’t garner enough support to make it onto the agenda, and the UNFCCC is similarly reluctant to address trade issues.

The G20 is a promising avenue for taking up this work, at a time when collaboration, dialogue and experience sharing are much needed. The recent G20 Hamburg summit indeed showed that there is a need for alignment as well as ambition on both trade and on climate.

This event will present and discuss a White Paper currently being prepared by ICTSD, building on a year-long effort to conceive an agenda on trade and climate change for the G20, generously supported by the KR Foundation.

Watch this session on YouTube


Moderator
avatar for Ricardo Meléndez-Ortiz

Ricardo Meléndez-Ortiz

Chief Executive, International Center for Trade and Sustainable Development
Ricardo MELÉNDEZ-ORTIZ (@RMelendezOrtiz) is co-founder of ICTSD and has been its Chief Executive since 1996. Previously, he co-founded and was General Director of Fundación Futuro Latinoamericano (Quito). He has represented Colombia as a negotiator in several multilateral fora, including as permanent delegate of Colombia... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for James Bacchus

James Bacchus

Senior Counselor, ICTSD
James Bacchus is Senior Counsellor at the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD). He is also Distinguished University Professor of Global Affairs and Director of the Center for Global Economic and Environmental Opportunity at the University of Central... Read More →
avatar for Axel Berger

Axel Berger

Senior Researcher, German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE)
Dr. Axel Berger is a researcher at the German Development Institute (Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik, DIE), Department for World Economy and Development Finance, Bonn. He holds a doctorate in political science from the University of Duisburg-Essen and a Master degree from... Read More →
avatar for Gary Horlick

Gary Horlick

Attorney at Law, Law Offices of Gary N. Horlick
Gary Horlick is an international trade attorney based in Washington, D.C. He is listed by Euromoney/Institutional Investor and Who’s Who Legal as one of the world’s highest-ranked international trade lawyers, and is ranked in the top tier by Chambers. | | Horlick is former international... Read More →
avatar for Beatriz Nofal

Beatriz Nofal

ECO-AXIS, Founding Partner, Former Argentina G20 Sherpa 2017
I am an expert on economc develoment, trade, investment, innovation. I have been an "entrepreneur" in public policy in all these areas. I am at presently developing and participating in a number of international initiatives in these fields. | During the first semester of 2017, I held... Read More →
avatar for Hon David Parker

Hon David Parker

Attorney-General Minister for Economic Development, Environment, and Trade and Export Growth Associate Minister of Finance
Born in Roxburgh in 1960, David grew up in Dunedin and has a BCom (Acctg) and LLB from the University of Otago. | | He was a litigation and managing partner in law firm Anderson Lloyd and was a co-founder of the Dunedin Community Law Centre. | | David is an experienced CEO and... Read More →
avatar for Richard Samans

Richard Samans

Member of the Managing Board, World Economic Forum
Mr Samans is a Member of the Managing Board of the World Economic Forum (WEF). He is responsible for the Forum’s action and policy oriented multistakeholder initiatives on major global challenges, relations with intergovernmental and civil society organizations and portfolio of... Read More →
avatar for Peter Thomson

Peter Thomson

Special Envoy for the Ocean of the UN Secretary General, United Nations
Ambassador Peter Thomson is a senior Fijian diplomat who was recently appointed by U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres as his Special Envoy for the ocean, seeking to galvanize efforts to protect the world's seas, including through the implementation of SDG14, the Sustainable Development... Read More →



Tuesday December 12, 2017 3:15pm - 4:45pm
Breakout Room 3 - Rivadavia

Attendees (80)