Publication - Policy Brief

24 May 2022

Aid for Trade Priorities on Plastic Pollution

Aid for trade is emerging as an important vehicle for supporting developing and least developed countries to transition towards more sustainable trade while building the environmental resilience and economic diversification vital for sustainable development.

Enhanced aid for trade targeted at trade-related aspects of plastic pollution—a major and rising global threat to the environment, health, and sustainable development—can support ongoing efforts in the Dialogue on Plastics Pollution at the World Trade Organization. These discussions seek to bolster cooperation on trade and trade policies in ways that make a positive contribution to global efforts to tackle plastic pollution, including the negotiations for a new legally binding international instrument on plastic pollution.

This policy brief identifies how aid for trade could be harnessed to support developing and least developed countries to address the trade-related aspects of the plastic pollution crisis in a manner that is aligned with their priorities and needs. It suggests a set of short- and medium-term “deliverables” on aid for trade and plastic pollution that WTO members could pursue through the Dialogue on Plastics Pollution and related cooperation at the WTO.

A key consideration when when looking at options on aid for trade and plastic pollution is to ensure that aid for trade priorities reflect the needs expressed by developing country and least developed country delegations in tackling plastic pollution.

Mahesh Sugathan