For companies to meet their emissions targets, the global trading system must adapt and companies are calling for this change, says the World Economic Forum (WEF) in its industry review report “Delivering a Climate Trade Agenda â.
Action on trade is needed for companies to unlock net zero targets. The study also reveals that companies are actively pursuing or are ready to accelerate emission reduction programs, and trade policy action can accelerate this change.
âTraditionally, trade and climate policy making has taken place in separate silos. The urgency of the climate crisis calls on us to break down these silos through public-private cooperation to accelerate emissions reductions while ensuring prosperity for all. The good news for policymakers is that businesses are ready and willing to support this change, âsaid WEF’s head of international trade and investment. Sean Doherty.
The solutions needed to mobilize trade policy to support climate action include reducing tariffs on climate-friendly products, unlocking access to technology and aligning with carbon-based trade policies, a the organization said in a September 20 statement.
âInternational trade will play a key role in achieving a just transition to a sustainable, low-carbon global economy. Businesses are ready to lead this transition, but governments can support them by ensuring that the right legislative and regulatory structures are in place, ânotes the international law firm and report contributor, partner Clifford Chance. Jessica gladstone.
The report explores global and national policy actions that can create climate-friendly trade that is fair, transparent and that relies on technology and innovation, she said.
The report includes a preface co-authored by the Director-General of the World Trade Organization Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Patricia espinosa welcoming business ideas.
Important intergovernmental meetings will be organized by the two organizations during the last quarter of this year, adds the WEF.
âBusinesses can take steps to encourage alignment of trade rules with climate action. WEF launched a two-year Climate Trade Zero work program on September 20 to support public and private discussions on these issues as part of building a more sustainable trading system.
In addition, many companies have also recognized that the transition is happening at different speeds and levels of intensity across countries and industries. Interviewees stressed the importance of providing support and incentives to developing countries, and supply chain partners in developing countries, to undertake the investments needed to reduce their emissions, according to the WEF.
Meanwhile, WEF is hosting a Sustainability Impact Summit from September 20-23. The meeting brings together global leaders from business, government and civil society under the theme Shaping a Fair, Inclusive and Sustainable Recovery.
It focuses on new technologies, policies and partnerships to advance cooperation, accelerate progress and highlight tangible solutions to global challenges.