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Contributing to Sustainable Development

by Redaktion (comments: 0)

A communication from the Commission to the council, the European Parliament and the European Economic and Social Committee has just been published – Contributing to Sustainable Development: The role of Fair Trade and non-government trade-related sustainability assurance schemes. The communication examines the current situation of Fair Trade and other non-governmental trade-related sustainability development objectives by purchasing decisions. This communication responds to the growing interests that have been articulated, at political levels as well as in the growing level of purchases by EU consumers. 

The 2005 exploratory opinion of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) looked at "consumer assurance schemes". Key findings were to identify the need for authoritative quality assessment of consumer assurance schemes and to fix central definitions. In June 2006 the European Council adopted its renewed sustainable development strategy and encouraged Member States to promote sustainable products, including Fair Trade. EU consumers each year purchase Fair Trade certified products for approximately 1.5 billion €; which is 70 times more than in 1999 when the Commission adopted a communication on this topic. This success underlines the need for consumers, public authorities and other stakeholders, including producer organisations in developing countries, to measure the real impact of Fair Trade. The full communication is available here




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