Blackmailing the global south on EU carbon border tax won't work


Eurodad's Senior Policy and Advocacy Officer Markus Trilling explains the negative effect of the EU's Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism' (CBAM) on countries in the global south. 

This opinion piece was first published by the EU Observer here.

The EU has heralded its new 'Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism' (CBAM) as an important environmental measure, but internationally this initiative is becoming deeply controversial.

It is intended to be a duty on the embedded greenhouse gas emissions of a range of products imported into the EU, including aluminium, cement, electricity, fertilisers, hydrogen, and iron and steel.

However, while CBAM — commonly referred to as the carbon border-tax — is designed to add an external dimension to the EU's Emission Trading System (ETS), it has direct negative impacts on developing countries, including the least developed countries (LDCs).

This is the verdict of multiple assessments coming from institutions like the UN Conference on Trade and Development, the London School of Economics — and even the EU itself in its own impact assessment.

Next week, India and South Africa will reportedly join this chorus of criticism and challenge the mechanism at the World Trade Organisation Conference in Abu Dhabi.

Read the full opinion piece in the EU Observer.