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Legal and trade issues related to eco-labelling and challenges for Bangladesh

Razzaque, Jona



This article raises certain legal and policy issues arising from the use of labelling for environmental purposes (eco-labels) in international trade, and the implications for market access, particularly for developing country products. Of particular interest are transparency issues relating to the design and implementation of voluntary eco-labelling schemes; the criteria used in the design of eco-labels which increasingly reflects the life cycle of products; and the WTO treatment of eco-labelling. Eco-labelling was identified as a significant area in Agenda 21 (1992) and in Doha Declaration (2001). More recently, the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation (WSSD, 2002) recognises the importance of consumer information related to sustainable consumption and explicitly noted the need to continue work in this area.

The financial cost of eco-labelling could be quite high. At the same time, eco-labelling is seen by some as an important element for gaining access to ‘green’ markets. Eco-labels may potentially enhance the terms of trade of those developing countries able to accurately translate the mood of industrialised country consumers into environmentally friendly product development. There are also hopes that eco-labelling could provide new opportunities for attracting capital investment and joint ventures in developing countries, such as Bangladesh. As a least developed country with a big emerging market, Bangladesh needs to have a better understanding of issues of eco-labelling. Therefore, this paper discusses the challenges and opportunities eco-labelling may create for Bangladesh.


Razzaque, J. (2003). Legal and trade issues related to eco-labelling and challenges for Bangladesh

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 1, 2003
Journal Journal of Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies
Print ISSN 1010-9536
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 24
Issue 4
Pages 529-562
Keywords legal issues, trade issues, eco-labelling, Bangladesh
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