Trade in Environmental Services – Lowering the Barriers, Seizing the Benefits

Major disruptions have often triggered technological revolutions and transitions to a new way of organizing production and consumption. The recovery from the Covid-19 crisis is such an opportunity for change. Technologies for a green recovery have matured over the past decade, and popular demand for change has grown louder while “building back better” has become a key goal in the mainstream policy debate.

While technology offers significant opportunities for improving economies’ environmental performance, more needs to be done to reap the benefits of environmental goods and services. The steps taken by WTO members to revive the discussions on the role that traded environmental goods and services could play in a green recovery is encouraging. However, key trade policy issues in areas related to environmental services still need to be addressed. These include: cross-border data flows from the Internet of Things, movement of people for installation, maintenance and repair, and public procurement.

Against this background, the webinar explored the main barriers to environmental services that remain in place, and how countries can make progress on lowering them.


Welcome: Hildegunn Kyvik Nordås, Senior Associate, Council on Economic Policies


Peter Brun, Global Offshore Wind Segment Leader, DNV
John Drummond, Head of Trade in Services Division, OECD
Crispin Conroy, Permanent Observer, International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)
Aik Hoe Lim, Director of Trade and Environment Division, WTO
Ana Laura Lizano,  Counsellor, Permanent Mission of Costa Rica to the WTO
Christine Schaeffer, Assistant Director, Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Ronald Steenblik, Non-resident Senior Fellow, International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

Moderator: Alice Tipping, Lead, Sustainable Trade and Fisheries Subsidies, International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)