Technologies used to produce goods and services with smaller carbon footprints are providing increasing economic opportunities, but many developing countries could miss them, unless governments and the international community take decisive action.
The Bhutanese government launched the ground-breaking G2B digital government portal, using UNCTAD’s customizable digital platform, making it the fastest place in the world to start a new business.
Issues of science, technology, and innovation remain endemic to development, and furthering our understanding of these issues is a core challenge for policy research. Deepening its commitment to this goal, UNCTAD launches the 2023 edition of its Technology and Innovation Report, a flagship publication that this year focuses specifically on what can be achieved by technological innovation by opening 'green windows of opportunity'. The report is built around green innovation - creating or introducing new or improved goods and services that leave lighter carbon footprints.
The world traded about 369 million tonnes of plastics in 2021 – enough to fill over 18 million trucks. The queue would wrap around the globe 13 times! Since less than 10% of all plastics produced have been recycled, most of the products will end up littering our streets and flooding our seas. But nature abounds in sustainable materials (bamboo, sand, banana plants, algae) that could be used to make eco-friendly versions of straws, shopping bags, bottles, food wrappers and other plastic products.
Plastic substitutes could cut global plastic waste by around 17% by 2040 – about 63 million tonnes less, or 3.5 million fewer trucks in the queue. “Besides the benefits to the planet, the shift offers economic opportunities,” said Henrique Pacini, an UNCTAD economist working on trade and environment issues. “But countries and companies have to work together and across borders to scale up production and reduce trade barriers."
The country’s online system is making it easier for women entrepreneurs to access the benefits of registering their company with the government.
The current food crisis, triggered by COVID-19 and the war in Ukraine, is different, a new UNCTAD report says, because of a stronger US dollar - creating a ‘double burden’ for developing countries.
Hemp is an amazing plant that is eco-friendly and used in food products, biofuels, textiles and even building materials. Its global market could hit $18.6 billion by 2027, a new UNCTAD report says.
A new UNCTAD report calls for increased investment in maritime supply chains. Ports, shipping fleets and hinterland connections need better prepare for future global crises and climate change.