The goals of sustainable development have taken root in policy discourse worldwide. No less than three key international conferences in 2015 further set in motion concerted efforts from all stakeholders to attempt to forge an integrated agenda for sustainable development. For one, nations are employing innovative industrial policies to foster the transition to a more sustainable economy. Indeed, renewable energy subsidies remain vital for such transition to make the sector economically viable, particularly in developing countries with nascent industries. Governments have intensified support measures to increase the cost-competitiveness of renewable energy with respect to the heavily subsidised fossil fuel industry. However, the current WTO legal architecture effectively shrinks the policy space for governments of developing nations through its archaic subsidy regime. This paper examines how the international trade law regime can accelerate the search for solutions to climate change vis-à-vis maximisation of renewable energy.
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