The workshop on “Unlocking South-South Trade in Environmental Goods and Services in Jiangsu” was held in Nanjing as part of the newly launched Green Trade Project under the framework of Partnership for Action on Green Economy (PAGE). The workshop convened around 50 participants from local governments, business associations, environmental companies, international organizations, and environmental NGOs. Key issues discussed included global and national trends in trade in Environmental Goods and Services (EGS), Jiangsu’s experience in trade in renewable energy and environmental technologies, the implications of rising global value chains of EGS, as well as opportunities and challenges of expanding green trade with developing countries.
The workshop was jointly organized by the Environment and Trade Hub of UN Environment on behalf of PAGE and Policy Research Center for Environment and Economy of Ministry of Environmental Protection (PRCEE) of China, in collaboration with Jiangsu International Environmental Development Centre (JIEDC). Keynote presentations were delivered by representatives from UN Environment, PRCEE, the Environmental Protection Department of Jiangsu Province, the Department of Commerce of Jiangsu Province, Jiangsu Association of PV industries, Global Value Chains Institute, and Shanghai University of International Business and Economics.
At the event, Ms. Liu Jianlin, Chief Engineer (Deputy Director-General) of the Environmental Protection Department of Jiangsu Province highlighted the importance of the workshop to Jiangsu’s Green Development and Green Economy Transition. She also anticipated that the workshop would further Jiangsu’s understanding of green trade and South-South cooperation regarding EGS trade and value chain integration.
Mr. Xia Guang, the director-general of PRCEE noted the potential of Jiangsu to upgrade EGS trade as a pathway towards Green Economy, given its fast-growing trade in renewable energy and strong policy commitment from the local government. He regarded the workshop as an important starting point for translating EGS trade potential into local level development opportunities.
Ms. Zhang Ying from UN Environment took the opportunity to share the work of the Environment and Trade Hub on green trade in the context of the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development, the Paris Agreement, and the rising global momentum driven by south-south trade, global value chains, and regional trade agreements and plurilateral negotiations. She stated, “As an early mover of EGS trade and Green Economy Transition, Jiangsu enjoys great potential on green trade and has a lot to share with its trading partners. We hope the workshop could help Jiangsu identify and harness these opportunities, as well as scale up successful stories and good practices to more developing countries.”
The workshop kicked off a new PAGE project to look at“The Role of Trade in Transition to a Green Economy in Jiangsu”. Jointly developed by the Environment and Trade Hub of UN Environment and PRCEE, the project aims to help Jiangsu evaluate and harness opportunities of green trade, summarize and share good practice, and explore how trade could facilitate the the transition to an Inclusive Green Economy and achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). To achieve the goal, the project has been actively engaging with public and private stakeholders in the province, including the Environmental Protection Department of Jiangsu Province, the Department of Commerce of Jiangsu Province, Nanjing Municipal Bureau of Commerce, local business associations and environmental NGOs. Apart from the workshop, the project will also deliver a stocktaking study report on the development of green trade in Jiangsu with concrete policy recommendations. The project taskforce-an advisory body, was established to provide guidance and support for the implementation of project activities.