Event | Advancing circular trade: Next steps for the EU and its partners

The circular economy involves a major paradigm shift, with economies transitioning away from a take-make-waste model to a sustainable model. The EU is a global leader and adopted its ambitious Circular Economy Action Plan under the Green Deal in 2020.

This event marks the launch of a new policy report highlighting how existing frameworks for trade and cooperation between the EU and its trade partners can be harnessed to advance the global circular economy.

Tuesday 31 May 2022
10:30–12:00 (CET)
Press Club Brussels Europe (Rue Froissart 95, 1040 Brussels)
Register here

The circular economy involves a major paradigm shift, with economies transitioning away from a take-make-waste model to a sustainable model. The EU is a global leader in this process and adopted its ambitious Circular Economy Action Plan under the Green Deal in 2020. The transition will play out at many levels and is strongly supported by the EU’s Sustainable Product Initiative, which will be developed in detail in the coming years. The EU is also promoting international cooperation in its external affairs and among like-minded countries in the Global Alliance for Circular Economy and Resource Efficiency (GACERE). In a linked global economy – reeling from the shocks of the COVID pandemic and Russia’s war in Ukraine – promoting circularity in trade policy and among trade partners can help enhance resilience.

Over the past two years, IEEP, Sitra and EMF have joined efforts to enhance the understanding of how trade policy can support the international transition to a circular economy. This transition will look different in each country, as will the joint initiatives the EU pursues with different trading partners. For this reason, the project has focused on a number of case studies, namely in Canada, China, Mercosur, and Nigeria.

This event serves as the final milestone of this project on trade and circular economy, allowing partners and stakeholders to share and discuss insights from the final report. Its overall objective is to inform policymakers and civil society about the implications and opportunities for the EU and third countries associated with their shift to a circular economy and to suggest concrete ways to support the circular transformation.

It will present the project’s findings, followed by a moderated panel discussion with key stakeholders implementing and working on circular economy solutions in the selected partner countries and in the EU. The panel session will also aim to discuss the strategic development and rollout of circular economy principles and their implications on global supply chains.

This would include touching on:

  • The required paradigm shift for a future circular economy model: moving from downstream end-of-life waste issues and management to upstream waste prevention, from the product design phase and throughout the value chains.
  • Sustainable global value chains for critical raw materials, with a focus on transparency, circularity and resource efficiency and associated technologies.

This event is organised as part of the EU Green Week and as a side event to the World Circular Economy Forum (WCEF) 2022.

This event will also be live-streamed via Zoom and it will be recorded for future use.

Speakers

Keynote speaker: Mari Pantsar, Director, Sustainability solutions, Sitra
Moderator: Malena Sell, Senior Specialist on Circular Economy, Sitra
Presentation: Antoine Oger, Eline Blot and Emma Watkins, IEEP

Panel:

  • Indre Vaicekauskaite, Policy Officer, Trade and Sustainable Development, DG Trade, European Commission
  • Jocelyn Blériot, Executive Lead, International Institutions & Governments, Ellen MacArthur Foundation
  • Dr. Ndidi Nnoli-Edozien, Chair Circular Economy Innovation Partnership and Managing Partner Afrikairos GmBH
  • Jasper Munier, Business Development Manager NWE at Clariter, a firm upcycling plastics waste into high valuable chemical end products such as solvents, oils and waxes

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