US, EU propose free trade in green technology

The United States and the European Union proposed that all nations scrap trade barriers for key green technologies, citing high growth prospects for an industry central to the fight against global warming.

US, EU propose free trade in green technology
The plan envisions a new World Trade Organization accord to eliminate tariffs worldwide on a priority list of climate-friendly technology. Rich and emerging nations would go further and pledge to end trade barriers for a wider range of environmental technologies and services.

Lowering duties and other barriers to clean-tech products and services, such as consulting, design and construction of energy- efficient buildings, would lower costs and help spread green technology, US Trade Representative Susan Schwab said in a statement.

She called it "an unprecedented opportunity" for WTO member countries to tackle the challenge of climate change.

World trade in the environmental goods covered by the proposal has grown by an average 15 per cent this century to some 613 billion dollars in 2006, the US said.

A World Bank study recently suggested that dismantling barriers to key technologies could boost trade by another 7 to 14 per cent a year, the US statement said.

The US-EU proposal comes before a UN meeting starting Monday in Indonesia with the goal of launching negotiations on a new international accord to combat global warming.

But the US and EU proposed the clean-technology plan as part of the long-stalled Doha Round of world trade talks, clouding its chances of success.

Agencies

Güncelleme Tarihi: 03 Aralık 2007, 12:52
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