United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

The Green Economy: Trade and Sustainable Development Implications

Publication Year: 2011 Publisher: UNCTAD

Green economy

Related Goals


Related Goals


This paper focuses primarily on the opportunities that global trade can bring in the transition to the green economy and how the Rio+20 conference can catalyse the transition by generating new investment,

income sources and jobs among countries of varied levels of development. It elaborates by explaining that trade plays an essential role in the diffusion of green goods, services, technologies and production among countries and that this enhances economic growth and contributes to environmental and social developmental objectives.

The report stresses that growth resulting from international trade of green goods and services should be inclusive, building the human and productive capacities of developing countries and stimulating economic diversification, employment for the poor and increased access to basic services such as energy, water, housing, education, communications and transport.

The paper concludes by presenting key issues and considerations that need to be taken into account in the Rio+20 conference deliberations and how UNCTAD can support countries in their transition to a green economy.