Presentation on theme: "A Presentation To the WTO Training Activity on Environmental Goods and Services for Developing Country Members February 18 th 2010."— Presentation transcript:
A Presentation To the WTO Training Activity on Environmental Goods and Services for Developing Country Members February 18 th 2010
The National Sub-Committee on Trade and Environment was created via a Cabinet decision in 1998 under the Ministry of Environment. It was one of several sub-committees advising the Ministry of Foreign Trade on issues relevant to the international trading arena.
The Sub- Committees primary focus includes: Contributing to the development of positions for international negotiations including the WTO Trade and Environment Negotiations; Assisting in developing national policies and programmes on trade and environment issues; Facilitating cooperation among actors in the areas of trade and environment in an effort to promote the common goal of sustainable development
The core complement consisted of representatives of: The Ministry of Tourism The Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry The Barbados Manufacturing Association The Ministry of Economic Development -Industry Section The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Foreign Trade Division The Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association The University of the West Indies (Two representatives one form the Department of Economics and one from the Faculty of Pure and Applied Sciences) The Barbados National Standards Institute The Ministry of the Environment, Water Resources and Drainage (Secretariat) Dr. Frank Ward, Rum Refinery of Mt. Gay is the Chairman of the Sub- Committee
An advisory role to the Ministry of Environment taking the form of: Inputs into regional processes and briefs Participating in developing the Barbadian Green Economy Discussion on sustainable consumption and production Inputs into bilateral trade agreements Working towards the development of national negotiation positions on trade and environment through the development and execution of various studies.
A strong national educational focus exemplified through the hosting of annual seminars. The themes of the seminars to date included: Trade, Environment and Competing in the Global Market. Environmental Management in Industry. Competitive Aspects of Trading. Environmental Measures and Agreements- Barriers to Trade, Facilitators of Trade or just a Nuisance? The Role of the Caribbean Single Market and Economy(CSME) in Trade Liberalisation and the Impacts on Barbados. Management Strategies for Energy Use: A Response to Rising Fuel Prices. The Liberalisation of Environmental Services in CARICOM and Opportunities for Business. The Green Economy: Benefits for Barbadian Industry.
In order to position the Government of Barbados to participate in the ongoing WTO dialogue on Paragraph 31(iii) of the Doha Declaration a study entitled Benefiting from trade liberalization in environmental goods and services - identifying the possibilities was designed by the NSCTE and commenced in October 2006. A Consultant from the University of the West Indies was retained to carry out the study.
The aim of the study was to: Adopt a definition of Environmental Goods (EGS) and Services and of Environmentally Preferable Products (EPPs) that are appropriate within the context of Barbados. Investigate and assess the correspondence between the types of EGS already in existence in the domestic economy and those needed to fulfill requirements under existing Multilateral Environmental Agreements and international standards. Identify the industries/sectors/products that are suitable for development of an export of EGS from Barbados through an assessment of the productive capacities, technological capabilities and cost competitiveness in the domestic EGS industries.
The methodology for the Study summarized : A survey (through the use of questionnaires and site visits) of the local EGS Industry. The survey was done to determine the range of products and services, the capacity of industries, technological capability, cost competitiveness profile, potential for growth and export potential. Trade analysis was conducted (involved the measurement of the extent to which domestic needs were being met from domestic sources of EGS, the assessment of usage gains for Barbados as a result of trade liberalization and measurement of the trade gains from the export of EGS.
Barbados trade in Environmental Goods was examined for selected years starting in 1992 up to 2006, the latest data available prior to submission of the study. Barbados trade balances are considered in relation to the specific headings used in the OECD/APEC list. The environmental goods were arranged into three broad groupings: Group A - Pollution Management; Group B - Cleaner Technologies and Products; and Group C - the Resources Management Group.
The broad groupings were further separated for example the Pollution Management group was separated into six categories : Air Pollution Control (consisted of 7 sub- categories) Wastewater Management Solid Waste Management Remediation and Cleanup Noise and Vibration Abatement and Environmental Monitoring, Analysis and Assessment.
Within each sub-category the component goods were identified by the Harmonised System Code for international trade and summarised in tables for ease of reference. The resources management group was separated into six categories The cleaner technology group was separated into two categories: Cleaner/resource –efficient technologies and processes; and Cleaner/resource-efficient products.
Latin America and the Caribbean as a group contribute 4% of global exports in EGS and import twice as much in value as they export (8%) of these environmental goods(as of 2007) Some 252 firms in Barbados are listed as exporters of environmental goods. However, because of the general nature and multiple use features of many goods classified as EGs, many of these firms do not consider their activity as belonging to the environmental industry.
Since many survey respondents did not consider their product as an environmental good they did not get involved in production because of any concerns for the environment. Indeed, the reasons advanced for producing the specific good(s) were having a skill needed for the production of that good and seeing the productive activity as lucrative.
Trade in environmental goods is in substantial and widening deficit overall and in every group and category. Much of the growth in imports of environmental goods is related to the rapid recent growth in the construction industry. Out of all the categories and sub-categories, only two minor sub-categories could be identified where there was a trade surplus. One of these was the item cans related to sewage treatment in wastewater management, while the other was the item absorbents in the Pollution Management group, category of remediation and cleanup.
While it was difficult to garner information on the nature of trade in environmental services, it was relatively easier to identify the domestic providers who were identified in the following areas: Wastewater services Solid waste management services Air pollution control Noise abatement services Remediation and cleanup for surface and groundwater Marine and costal ecology Analytical services Consultancy services Construction and installation (although for large scale projects these services were imported) Education and training
The domestic environmental services providers supply mainly analytical and basic research services with lower values. Foreign firms provide the major services including major equipment installation and monitoring services.
The solid waste management sub-sector and the recycling subsector were fairly well populated with producers. While it was not clear that the waste management sub-sector could move to export their services, the recyclers were already primarily into exports. Using the joint OECD/APEC list it was not possible to guage exports of recycled goods as this list did not provide HS trade Codes for these items
The first two recommendations were specifically called for by respondents Development of Education and Training Programmes for the associated regulatory departments. Implementation of the solid waste management regime with emphasis on establishing a competitive recycling programme.
The Ministry of the Environment, Water Resources and Drainage is proposing to undertake further study under Paragraph 31 (iii). Of immediate importance would be projecting the effects of removal of tariff barriers on trade in EGS. It is envisaged that this study : Will be a multi-sectoral; Will consider the impact of trade on production patterns and compute environmental impact. Will utilise proxy variables to handle data unavailability, data insufficiency and the social valuation of data without a market economic value. Will provide guidance for an investment programme to stimulate export development.
Although the GOB has made initial steps towards describing its national circumstance as it relates to EGS we are not yet in the position to participate as actively as we would wish in the ongoing negotiations We believe that technical assistance would be necessary to take the process from its current inception stage to a stage where we can contribute in a more meaningful way in the negotiations. Some areas for focus include: The trade impacts of MEAs Means of support for SMEs Sharing of experience with other developing countries in a similar position
Amrikha D. Singh Environmental Officer Ministry of the Environment, Water Resources and Drainage Tel: 246-467-5704 Fax:246-437-8859 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org