Legal and Regulatory Framework - UNEP
One of the Environment and Trade Hub’s core focus areas is shaping governance at the trade, investment and environment nexus. As such, the Environment and Trade Hub aims to build capacity for countries to pursue environmental management and sustainable development through trade and investment agreements and global economic and environmental governance mechanisms. UN Environment is an official observer of the WTO Committee on Trade and Environment (CTE) and regularly engages WTO members in identifying trade and green economy interlinkages and to bolster policy support. Additionally, the Environment and Trade Hub encourages trade and investment agreements that increasingly facilitate countries' mutual pursuit of environmental, economic and social priorities such as combatting climate change, enhancing resource efficiency, and ensuring social inclusiveness. This work aims to help countries better understand, draft and negotiate provisions in trade and investment agreements by providing toolkits, templates, and manuals for negotiators as well as analysis of examples and best practices to help guide trade and investment negotiations.
The Environment and Trade Hub has also produced a range of pioneering resources to shape governance at the trade, investment, and environment nexus. The Trade and Green Economy: A Handbook, produced in collaboration with IISD, aims to increase coordination and reduce tension between the international trade and environment agendas and has been translated into five languages and downloaded more than 100,000 times. Additionally, the joint WTO-UN Environment report, Trade and Climate reviews how trade and climate change policies interact and how they can
Anja von Moltke
Head, Environment and Trade Hub
Economics and Trade Branch
E-mail: anja.moltke [at] unep.org ()
UN Environment has undertaken a number of activities addressing legal and regulatory frameworks, particularly as related to sustainability standards and eco-labels. Eco-labels have become increasingly popular in European and other Western countries, however, due to the lack of information, expertise, technology, and resources, emerging countries have often not been able to seize the opportunities that certification can provide fully. Instead, these countries often perceive them as trade barriers when trying to export non-certified products into developed countries where these measurements are required. The Environment and Trade Hub focuses on the market opportunities arising from environmental and social standards, certification, and eco-labelling contributing to its work stream on green markets and global value chains. It helps partner countries identify economic sectors where domestic compliance with international standards can increase market access and improve the value of exports while enhancing sustainability and social development.