United Nations Environment Programme
Division of Technology, Industry, and Economics
Economics and Trade Branch

International Workshop on Post-2012 Climate and Trade Policies

Geneva, 8 - 9 September 2008

This workshop was convened by the UNEP Economics and Trade Branch and the EU-funded ADAM project (‘Adaptation and Mitigation Strategies: Supporting European Climate Policy’). It aims to build on previous UNEP trade and climate change dialogues by bringing together a range of leading experts to actively discuss trade and economic strategies in a post-2012 world and on the future interplay between the UN climate regime and the World Trade Organization.

In December 2007 at the Bali UNFCCC conference, parties to the UN climate regime launched a two-year negotiation process aimed at forging a post-2012 agreement. Effectively addressing climate change in this agreement will require solutions that necessarily have an impact on international trade. While the climate-trade nexus has become the focus of an extensive academic debate, policy communities have tended to approach the institutional and policy overlap with caution. Recently however, policy-makers have increasingly concentrated their attention on the thematic inter-linkages among the climate and trade regimes. Just prior to the Bali conference, WTO parties began discussing trade liberalisation for a number of climate-friendly goods and services. Moreover, during the conference in Bali , an Informal Trade Ministers’ Dialogue on Climate Change was held, where 32 Trade Ministers emphasised the need for increased high-level engagement for improving the mutual supportiveness of the climate and trade regimes.

Against this background, the purpose of the Post-2012 Climate and Trade Policies workshop was threefold:

  • to examine potential key elements of a future climate regime that have implications for the international trading system;
  • to discuss various approaches through which the world trade regime can address or otherwise affect climate change in a post-2012 world; and
  • to explore opportunities for synergistic interplay between the negotiating agendas of both regimes, i.e. the Doha Agenda and the Bali Road Map.


Contact: benjamin.simmons@unep.ch