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Climate and trade policies: from mutual destruction to mutual support

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  • Patrick Messerlin

    (Département d'économie)

Abstract

There is no doubt that trade and climate policies can be mutually destructive. But there are three strong reasons to suggest that they can also be mutually supportive: they have a common problem, common foes, and common friends. Mutual support would be much stronger if the world regimes for these two policies shared a few common principles. The climate community should feel at ease with the broad WTO principles of ‘national treatment’ and ‘most-favoured nation’, and rely on them in building its own treaty and institutions. The trade community should grasp the opportunity to benefit from the better disciplines on adjustment policies that it is hoped the climate community will design. These conclusions should put the many pending problems into a more positive perspective, and persuade negotiators to find pragmatic compromises, as was the case with the GATT. Using this perspective, the paper focuses on a few key issues, such as the definition of carbon border taxes and the reasons to ban carbon tariffs. Other cases of mutual support are examined. For instance, the climate community should not repeat the mistakes of the world trade regime in dealing with the developing and least developed countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrick Messerlin, 2012. "Climate and trade policies: from mutual destruction to mutual support," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/faqom67ai2q, Sciences Po.
  • Handle: RePEc:spo:wpmain:info:hdl:2441/faqom67ai2qsojk9j15c04u8j
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    File URL: https://spire.sciencespo.fr/hdl:/2441/faqom67ai2qsojk9j15c04u8j/resources/wtr-wtr11-01-s1474745611000395a.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Horn, Henrik & Mavroidis, Petros C., 2008. "The Permissible Reach of National Environmental Policies," Working Paper Series 739, Research Institute of Industrial Economics, revised 20 Jun 2008.
    2. Michael O. Moore, 2011. "Implementing Carbon Tariffs: A Fool’s Errand?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 34(10), pages 1679-1702, October.
    3. Juan Delgado, 2007. "Why Europe is not carbon competitive," Policy Briefs 33, Bruegel.
    4. Will Martin & Patrick Messerlin, 2007. "Why is it so difficult? Trade liberalization under the Doha Agenda," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(3), pages 347-366, Autumn.
    5. Monjon, Stéphanie & Quirion, Philippe, 2010. "How to design a border adjustment for the European Union Emissions Trading System?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(9), pages 5199-5207, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sheldon, Ian & McCorriston, Steve, 2014. "Climate Policy and Border Measures: The Case of the US Aluminum Industry," 2014 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2014, Minneapolis, Minnesota 169544, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

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    Keywords

    Commerce international--Aspect de l'environnement;

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