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TERI Information Digest on Energy and Environment
Year : 2002, Volume : 1, Issue : 1
First page : ( 170) Last page : ( 171)
Print ISSN : 0972-6721.

Trade and Environment


[227]Contradictions between WTO and sustainable development? The case of environmental dumping
Lothe S. 2001This paper discusses how the WTO (World Trade Organization) agreement deals with the environmental and competitiveness concerns linked to trade and environmental policies. As the use of traditional export subsidies and other protectionist trade policies are now strongly restricted in the WTO, many countries will try to find other ways to increase competitiveness. One way of doing this is to use lax environmental taxation or regulation as indirect subsidies (i.e. environmental dumping). If this is done, the reduced possibilities of using traditional protectionist trade policies could harm the environment, thus reducing the overall welfare gain from trade liberalization. Environmental countervailing tariffs have been suggested as a way of reducing incentives for environmental dumping. The WTO rules are examined in order to analyse the feasibility of the uses of environmental countervailing tariffs in the current and future framework of WTO, and the incentives and welfare sequences are analyzed under different market scenarios.
(19 references)
Sustainable Development9(4):197–203
Norwegian School of Management,
PO Box 580, N-1302 Sandvika, Norway


[228]The Winnipeg Principles, WTO and sustainable development: proposed policies for reconciling trade and the environment
Tisdell C. 2001There is a widespread belief that the WTO has made virtually no concessions to environmentalists about their concerns arising from free trade and the process of globalization. There are concerns that these processes may undermine prospects for sustainable development. Following the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, the IISD (International Institute for Sustainable Development) was established to advocate policies to support sustainable development within Canada and globally. In 1994, it proposed the Winnipeg Principles as a means for reconciling international trade and development so as to achieve sustainable development. These seven principles are outlined in this article and assessed. Although the IISD had hoped through these principles to influence the work programme of the Environment and Trade Committee of the WTO, it seems to have little effect. Probably if these principles had been seriously considered by WTO, the serious social conflicts which emerged globally at the beginning of this century would have been avoided, and we would be in a better position to understand the complex links between trade, environment and sustainable development and adopt relevant policies.
(15 references)
Sustainable Development9(4):204–212
School of Economics,
University of Queensland, Brisbane 4072, Queensland, Australia


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