Geneva: International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) (Issue Paper March 2017)
The Paris Climate Agreement, reached in December 2015, is designed to drive greater climate action, while allowing countries to choose their own targets and mitigation measures. This diversity and scale-up in ambition will increase interactions between climate measures and trade. This paper analyses countries’ nationally-determined climate contributions (NDCs) from a trade perspective. It assesses which countries address key trade elements, and explores options for trade frameworks to support climate efforts and ways to minimise potential conflicts between the trade and climate regimes. While trade-related elements feature prominently in countries’ climate contributions, there is tremendous untapped potential to use trade for driving climate action. The paper proposes ways for future NDCs to positively incorporate more trade elements and create a mutually reinforcing relationship between the climate and trade regimes.