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NFTC Launches Trade and Climate Working Group
Date: 8/3/2009
Written By: Jennifer Cummings, The Fratelli Group for NFTC, 202-822-9491

Washington, DC - The National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC) today announced the launch of a new Trade and Climate Working Group, which will focus on the trade- and competitiveness-related aspects of U.S. and global climate policies.

The Working Group will address key policy issues at the intersection of trade and climate change. These issues arise in domestic legislation and international negotiations aimed at curbing climate change and include: ensuring trade-related climate measures in domestic legislation comply with global trade rules; promoting liberalized green trade and U.S. leadership in support of a comprehensive environmental goods and services trade agreement; highlighting the need for strong protection of intellectual property rights to spur the development of new environmental technologies and green jobs in the United States; and advocating an international framework for dealing with trade and competitiveness-related climate measures.

With the recent passage of the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 in the House, the likelihood of Senate action in the fall, and international climate negotiations set to conclude in Copenhagen in December, there are a number of moving parts that could impact the trading system and the global competitiveness of our member companies, said NFTC Vice President for Global Trade Issues Jake Colvin. "The United States has a tremendous opportunity to create new jobs through green trade and the development and deployment of innovative clean technologies, but success depends on the extent to which climate policies are grounded in a rules-based international framework."

Jeremy Preiss, Vice President, Chief International Trade Counsel for United Technologies Corporation (UTC) and a member of NFTC's board, will serve as the corporate chair of the new Working Group. The groups goal is to inform policymakers in Washington and elsewhere about the potential impact climate policies may have on the trading system and the need for multilateral agreement on permissible trade-related climate measures, said Preiss. Trade and climate policies must be mutually reinforcing to advance environmental goals and promote the growth of green trade and jobs. If the policies conflict, the threat of a new era of green protectionism grows greater, and trade and the environment could both suffer.

The Working Group, which is open to NFTC board members, is designed to provide opportunities to collaborate on and advance member company interests with respect to trade-and-competitiveness aspects of U.S. and international climate policies.

Representatives from NFTC plan to participate as observers in the Conference of Parties (COP) 15 in Copenhagen this December, the set of international negotiations held under the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC), which are expected to result in an international agreement on climate policies.

About the NFTC

Advancing Global Commerce for 95 Years - The National Foreign Trade Council is a leading business organization advocating an open, rules-based global trading system. Founded in 1914 by a broad-based group of American companies, the NFTC now serves hundreds of member companies through its offices in Washington and New York.

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