SWAKOPMUND – Southern African Customs Union (SACU) executive secretary Paulina Elago says African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries will have to acquire new investments in the transformation of production processes that utilise environment-friendly technologies.
Elago made the observation during the official opening of SACU’s three-day strategic meeting for senior trade officials that is currently underway in Swakopmund.
According to Elago, such new investments is a must as policies such as the Paris Agreement and the European Union Green Deal Strategy which will come into effect later this year will have major implications on the multilateral trade environment.
“You may be aware that the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) 21st Conference, held in November 2015 agreed on the Paris Agreement, which will come into effect in 2020. This agreement has major implications for the multilateral trade environment. The recently unveiled EU Green Deal Strategy would equally have implications on trade and industrialisation in the ACP economies,” she explained.
The Paris Agreement is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and deals with greenhouse gas emissions, mitigation, adaptions and finance in an effort to combat global climate change.
The European Union (EU) Green Deal Strategy, on its part, is a set of policy initiatives brought forward by the EU with the aim of making Europe climate-neutral by 2050. The plan is also to review existing laws on its climate merits as well as introduce new legislation on circular economy, building renovation biodiversity farming and innovation.
Elago said future trade agreements between the EU and the ACP countries would contain binding commitments on sustainable development and require new investments in transformation of production processes in ACP countries which utilise environment-friendly technologies if they want to trade with EU countries.
As a norm, the senior trade officials convene annually to consider SACU trade negotiation and policy related developments to be undertaken during the course of the year.
These deliberations provide strategic guidance to the SACU secretariat and technical experts on trade negotiations, implementation of agreements, policy related matters as well as regional and multilateral agreements that may influence the SACU trade agenda. SACU member states are Namibia, Botswana, South Africa, Lesotho and eSwatini.
Eveline de Klerk
2020-02-27 06:52:34 | 4 months ago