World Trade Organization (WTO)

Expert Voices

Carbon "tariffs" could trigger a collision of climate and trade policy

Illustration: Sarah Grillo

In a recent speech, French President Emmanuel Macron raised a proposal for an EU–wide carbon “tariff” on goods coming into the bloc from countries without a price on carbon — a way to lead by example on climate while still leading through advantage for industry.

Why it matters: The plan could prompt other countries to adopt carbon pricing in part to avoid disadvantaging their goods and services. In the best case, it could lead to a rapid increase in the amount of global emissions exposed to a carbon price, without creating excessively harmful economic distortions.

Expert Voices

International support could bolster U.S. trade talks with China

Two suitcases stuffed with cash, with the U.S. and Chinese flags on them
Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Upcoming meetings of the WTO, G20, APEC, OECD and other ad hoc coalitions could offer the U.S. an opportunity to secure a broader base of international support for meaningful and durable Chinese economic reforms.

Why it matters: U.S. negotiators have made notable progress on the most pressing trade issues with China, especially around intellectual property rights, forced technology transfers and industrial subsidies. But the Trump administration's parallel use of unilateral tariffs under Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act has rankled longtime U.S. partners.