The role of trade in a development-led global energy transition

Action taken by the Trade and Development Board 2022
The role of trade in a development-led global energy transition
Agreed Conclusions
Closing plenary meeting
25 Nov 2022

The Trade and Development Commission

  1. Reiterates that international trade is a critical driver for transforming economies through diversification and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, including Goal 7 on ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all;
  2. Welcomes the continuation of related substantive discussions on (a) commodities and development; and (b) trade, services and development, through respective multi-year expert meetings;
  3. Acknowledges the role that trade in services plays in economic diversification; takes note of the expert discussions on digitally deliverable services and their current regulatory practices; and takes note of the creation of the informal working group on services data;
  4. Acknowledges the constructive considerations of the background document prepared by the UNCTAD secretariat on how trade and trade policy could promote a sustainable energy transition, particularly of developing countries;
  5. Stresses the importance of synergies between UNCTAD and relevant United Nations and other international organizations within their respective mandates and resources concerning the role of trade in a sustainable global energy transition to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, leaving no one behind, including with the trade divisions of the United Nations regional commissions;
  6. Expresses concern about the cost-of-living crisis and its adverse impact, especially on developing countries;
  7. Notes with appreciation the capacity-building initiatives carried out by the UNCTAD secretariat for developing countries for sustainable development, on issues such as non-tariff measures, alternative economic frameworks such as the circular economy, sustainable oceans economy, trade and gender, competition and consumer protection law and policy and voluntary sustainability standards; and encourages UNCTAD to continue its work in these areas;
  8. Calls upon the UNCTAD secretariat to continue to examine the effects of climate change in terms of trade on developing countries and how environmental sustainability can promote global trade;
  9. Calls upon the UNCTAD secretariat to continue to monitor and report on trade trends and policies, including their impact upon competition, consumer protection and the creative economy;
  10. Encourages knowledge-sharing and the promotion of cooperation and partnership in the areas of science, technology and innovation between stakeholders, notably between Governments, the private sector and civil society, including academia, to facilitate technology development to support the energy transition;
  11. Further calls upon the UNCTAD secretariat to continue to support the competitiveness of developing countries in the production and trade of renewable energy and to analyse how international trade and trade policy can facilitate the global energy transition.