IISD Reporting Services -
KEY PUBLICATIONS AND ONLINE RESOURCES
TRADE AND INVESTMENT IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
This page was updated on: 01/12/10
(Center for Environmental Law and Policy, Yale University, and Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN), Columbia University, 2006) The EPI ranks 133 countries on 16 indicators tracked in six established policy categories, identifying targets for environmental performance and measuring how closely each country comes to these goals. The report finds that environmental policy results “can be tracked with the same outcome-oriented and performance-based rigor that applies to poverty reduction, health promotion, and other global development goals.” It also argues that clearer targets, monitoring and mainstreaming are needed for environmental protection efforts. The report suggests that the top-ranked countries such as New Zealand and Sweden commit significant resources to environmental protection. The pilot EPI was formally released at Davos, Switzerland, during the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum. More information and the report.
(IUCN, ICTSD, CIEL, IDDRI and QUNO, November 2005) This collection of essays, written by experts in the field, aims to shed light on the utility of disclosure requirements as a means for integrating biodiversity concerns into intellectual property systems. Selim Louafi and Brendan Tobin examine the potential of user measures to resolve potential conflicts between the WTO and the CBD; Maria Julia Oliva and Ann Perrault address issues of prior informed consent and access to genetic resources; Michael Gollin examines the feasibility of national requirements for disclosure of origin; David Vivas-Eugui and Manuel Ruiz consider the justification, scope and legal effects of an effective disclosure mechanism; Begoña Venero examines the disclosure requirement at the international level and the role of the TRIPS Agreement; Graham Dutfield addresses a range of legal and policy issues related to disclosure of origin; and Felix Addor examines Switzerland’s proposals for disclosure of the source of genetic resources and traditional knowledge, and its proposed amendments to the Patent Cooperation Treaty Regulations. The book.
(Wuppertal Institute, 2005) Authored by Carolina Lasén Diaz, this paper aims to provide a comprehensive background and overview of key issues, debates and positions related to the international regulation and application of intellectual property rights over biological resources. This includes biotechnology and the use and protection of the traditional knowledge of indigenous and local communities. It provides two case studies on how intellectual property rights affect biodiversity and traditional knowledge, and examines the international governance of biodiversity and intellectual property rights, focusing on the Convention on Biological Diversity, the World Intellectual Property Organization and the TRIPS Agreement. It also examines the increasing impacts of bilateral agreements that govern intellectual property rights in conjunction with the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV), and analyses their relationship with the FAO International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and the CBD. The paper.
(Network of Heads of European Environmental Protection Agencies, 2005) This paper by the Network of Heads of 29 European Environmental Protection Agencies is tabled as a “contribution to the current debate” on the importance of environment policy in a European political climate perceived by some to have marginalized it in favor of narrowly-focused economic growth policies. The paper.
(World Bank, 2005) This resource is the transcript of a speech that Paul Wolfowitz, President of the World Bank Group, gave at the Annual Conference of Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) on 4 November 2005 in Washington, DC. The transcript.
This website aims to facilitate trade in food and agriculture products and support the implementation of the World Trade Organization’s Sanitary and Phytosanitary Agreement by providing a single access point for authorized official international and national information across the sectors of food safety, animal and plant health. The website was organized by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, Convention on Biological Diversity, Codex Alimentarius Commission, International Plant Protection Convention, World Organization for Animal Health, World Health Organization and World Trade Organization. The portal.
(WTO, October 2005) The World Trade Organization has developed a webpage designed to answer questions about the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) Agreement and its provisions on licensing for pharmaceuticals. According to the WTO, the issue is the subject of “a certain amount of confusion.” The webpage.
(World Bank, 2005) This source provides a transcript of Paul Wolfowitz’s first address to the Annual Meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund as President of the World Bank Group, on 24 September 2005. More information.
(UN, 2005) The World Economic and Social Survey 2005 Financing for Development examines the agenda for action that was set out in the Monterrey Consensus and draws attention to action in the financing and trade areas that needs to be undertaken to achieve both the Millennium Development Goals and the broader United Nations Development Agenda. The report.
(Flows, September 2005) Supported by the World Bank and the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), this Flows Bulletin – “Payments for watershed services in coastal areas: not whether but when, and the cost of delay” – focuses on the impact of storms and flooding on wetlands and economics in the U.S. state of Louisiana following Hurricane Katrina. The Bulletin.
(IISD, August 2005) In this report, Mark Halle of the International Institute for Sustainable Development provides a perspective on the status of the Doha round of trade negotiations, suggesting that the gulf between parties on key issues remains very wide as the Hong Kong ministerial meeting in December 2005 fast approaches. However, he adds that there is still a chance that Hong Kong would “break the log-jam” and pave the way for an acceptable package by late 2006, especially if there are “genuine concessions by the U.S. or the EU.” The report.
(Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, September 2005) Written by Steve Suppan, this briefing outlines the key issues in the WTO case regarding biotech products, brought by the US, Canada and Argentina against the EC, arguing that the ruling will very likely be treated as a precedent by future WTO panels ruling on food safety, public health and environmental health measures applied to international traded goods and services. The briefing.
(WBCSD, 2005) The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) released this report on the first day of the 2005 World Summit. The paper explores business solutions in support of the Millennium Development Goals, stating that framework conditions are the most important factor affecting business investment, and emphasizing a focus on investment in regulatory and legal frameworks, capacity building for local enterprises, and core infrastructure. More information.
(IISD, 2005) This paper by Aaron Cosbey, Luke Eric Peterson and László Pintér of the International Institute for Sustainable Development seeks to explore the various linkages that exist between trade policy (including investment, intellectual property rights, goods, and services) and environmental health. The paper.
(Convention on Biological Diversity, 2005) Prepared by the Secretariat
of the Convention on Biological Diversity, this study provides an
analysis of the potential implications for agricultural biodiversity of
a reduction in, and reform of, agricultural support activities. It
provides an overview of the Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture and
the main developments that followed, and addresses different domestic
support policies using the World Trade Organization categorization into
“boxes.” It concludes that well-targeted, designed and implemented
programmes based on scientifically sound environmental performance
indicators can contribute to internalizing the positive external effects
of agricultural production on biodiversity. The
(SustainAbility, 2005) This report contains the results of a SustainAbility and WWF research project on how 100 of the world’s largest companies report on their lobbying practices. The report.
(WTO, 2005) The World Trade Organization has published its 2005 Annual. Marking the organization’s 10th anniversary, the report contains a section reviewing developments since 1995 and considering future challenges. The report.
(ICTSD, May 2005) This discussion paper by the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) considers the interface between trade, climate change and sustainable energy. Authors Malena Sell, Bernice Law and Matthew Walls argue that the aims of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and its Kyoto Protocol can in most cases be aligned with those of the WTO. However, it also advocates win-win opportunities in a number of areas, including negotiations on agriculture subsidies. The report.
(WBCSD, 2005) This online video gallery produced by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) showcases the views of business leaders on sustainable livelihoods business and how they are implementing this approach in their companies, as well as examples of sustainable livelihoods businesses in the field. The website.
(MEA, July 2005) The fourth Millennium Ecosystem report, entitled “Ecosystems and Human Well-being: Opportunities and Challenges for Business and Industry,” has been released. The report summarizes key trends in ecosystems and their services, particularly ecosystem trends of importance to business, and then reviews how the Millennium Assessment findings affect businesses’ bottom line. The report argues that companies using the Earth’s natural resources more wisely are likely to see bigger profits and enjoy greater long-term stability. The report.
(WBCSD, June 2005) This report by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) examines how companies can obtain value by understanding the relationship between accountability and sustainability and their core business strategy. The report.
(WTO, 2005) A number of “position papers” from non-governmental organizations on trade issues have been submitted to the World Trade Organization as part of its efforts to achieve “greater transparency and an enhanced dialogue with NGOs. More information.
(UNCTAD, May 2005) Written by Simonetta Zarrilli, this paper examines the challenges of agricultural biotechnology for developing countries. It overviews the provisions of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety and their compatibility with WTO rules, as well as national biosafety frameworks. It concludes that it is proving difficult for developing countries to reconcile their trade interests with the responsibility to improve the quantity and quality of agricultural and food products for their people, and with their commitment to environmental preservation. The paper.
(International Institute for Sustainable Development, 2005) This report from IISD’s Howard Mann and Konrad von Moltke considers “how to approach international investment negotiations based on an agenda that takes the priorities of developing countries as its starting point.” The report considers various issues relevant to developing countries, including the need for investment to support development goals. The report.
IISD also recently launched its Model International Agreement on Investment for Sustainable Development: Negotiators’ Handbook. The Handbook.
The World Trade Organization’s updated website on the revision of Article 27.3(b) of the TRIPS (Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights) Agreement includes submissions by Member States on the relationship between the Convention on Biological Diversity and the TRIPS Agreement, protection of traditional knowledge, and disclosure of origin and prior informed consent in patent applications.
(WTO, 2005) The Secretariat of the World Trade Organization has prepared a note containing a matrix on trade-related measures relating to selected multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs). Prepared in consultation with various MEAs’ secretariats, the note covers 14 agreements, including the Convention on Biological Diversity, UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and its Kyoto Protocol, as well as several chemicals-related treaties.
(OECD, January 2005) This annual OECD report underscores the need for more effective aid in order to reach the MDGs. The report notes that while development aid from OECD countries increased in 2003, most of the increase arose from inflation and exchange rate fluctuations. The report calls for improving aid procedures, practices and policies to achieve better development outcomes. The report also contains a special feature on the need for more aid in the area of water and sanitation, noting that donors are committing less to the water sector than in previous years and that most of the funding has gone towards financing urban infrastructure in middle income countries compared to assisting marginalized communities in need of clean water.
(UNCTAD 2005) Published by the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), this report examines the global economic situation leading into 2005. According to the report, 2004 saw a 4% increase in growth of gross world product (GWP), compared to 2.8% in 2003 and a forecast of 3.25% for 2005. Developing countries exhibited the fastest growth, and output in the economies in transition continued to increase more rapidly than in the other major country groups. Among the developed countries, growth in North America was strong, while it was moderate in Japan, and weak in Europe. The report highlights the slow growth of employment and the persistence of high rates of unemployment and underemployment in most developing countries as “universal weaknesses” in the world economy, and states that poverty reduction will continue to be evasive unless improved economic growth is reflected in increased employment. While noting many positive aspects in the current world economy for developing countries, including a recent rise in commodity prices, the report also notes that few countries in Africa “grew by more than the 7 per cent that is deemed necessary to attain the UN Millennium Development Goals” in 2004. The report also addressed a wide range of other global economic issues, with extensive sections on international trade, financial flows, and regional development. While the report is generally upbeat, it does warn that “the possibility of an abrupt and globally damaging correction persists, since a depreciation of the [US] dollar alone seems unlikely to be sufficient to reduce the global imbalances to sustainable levels in an orderly fashion.ï¿½
PRO-POOR GROWTH THROUGH SUPPORT FOR PRIVATE SECTOR DEVELOPMENT
CALL FOR COMMENTS: IISD'S DRAFT MODEL INTERNATIONAL INVESTMENT AGREEMENT FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
(IISD, 2005) A draft model for future international investment agreements that emphasizes sustainable development has been published. The new model was developed by the International Institute for Sustainable Development. According to IISD, the current model for investment agreements was developed almost 50 years ago, and is ripe for revision. IISD has invited public comments on the draft model by 7 February 2005. The draft model treaty.
IMF INVITES INPUT ON RESOURCE REVENUE TRANSPARENCY GUIDE
The International Monetary Fund has released a Draft Guide on Resource Revenue Transparency aimed at assisting countries in tackling challenges relating to the management of revenues from extracting fossil fuels. The Draft Guide, which encourages fiscal transparency, is also intended to support the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative launched at the WSSD. Comments on the Draft Guide should be submitted by 18 February 2005. The IMF Draft Guide webpage.
THE FUTURE OF THE WTO: ADDRESSING INSTITUTIONAL CHALLENGES IN THE NEW MILLENNIUM
(WTO, 2004) This new report on the World Trade Organization was released in January 2005 to reflect on ways to improve the WTO in the coming years. Its release marks the tenth anniversary of the WTO, which formally came into being on 1 January 1995. The report considers a range of issues, including the case for liberalizing trade, the erosion of non-discrimination, as well as issues of sovereignty, transparency, intergovernmental cooperation, the WTO dispute settlement system, and the role of the Director-General and Secretariat. The report concludes with recommendations for a number of ï¿½realizable reforms,ï¿½ including the need to limit preferential trade agreements and establish better global governance. It also contains specific recommendations concerning dialogue with civil society, dispute settlement, and organizational changes. The report was authored by a consultative board of eminent academics, international officials and businesspeople. It was chaired by Peter Sutherland, the current chair of BP and Goldman Sachs International. The report.