The ACCTS initiative complements our ongoing advocacy and leadership on this global issue of climate change. See also: > press release > Flyer > Learn more about trade and climate change In this context, it is worth noting the announcement made by New Zealand, Costa Rica, Fiji, Iceland and Norway, at the Climate Change Summit in February 2020, to start negotiations on a new «climate change agreement», trade and sustainability» (ACCTS). These countries are not large economies or major emitters of greenhouse gases (GHGs). As announced in the initiative`s launch statement, these are «relatively small, outward-looking and trade-dependent countries» that aspire to sustainable and inclusive economic development. The successful adoption of an ACCTS is a matter of climate leadership for example, not leadership by structural economic power. Second, the agreement must ultimately attract many more participants. The EU, which is already trying to adapt its trade agreements to the fight against climate change, is a clear candidate. At the climate summit, French President Emmanuel Macron called on other heads of state and government to make their trade and climate agenda coherent. For the EU, joining the agreement would be a way to strengthen its leadership in the fight against climate change and to go beyond rhetorical demands not to conclude trade agreements with the already small number of non-parties to the Paris Agreement. Other potential candidates include APEC members who agreed on the list of environmental goods, signatories to the 2015 communiqué on fossil fuel subsidy reform, and countries that agreed in 2018 to advance discussions on fossil fuel subsidies under the aegis of the WTO. In the long term, it will be essential to evolve the results of the ACCTS at the multilateral level. The case for applying trade rules to discipline fossil fuel subsidies is particularly compelling.
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