U.S. trade chief Tai says climate key priority in trade policy

FILE PHOTO: U.S. Senate Finance Committee conducts hearing on nomination of Katherine Tai to be U.S. Trade Representative.
FILE PHOTO: Katherine C. Tai addresses the Senate Finance committee hearings to examine her nomination to be United States Trade Representative, with the rank of ambassador, in Washington, DC February 25, 2021. Bill O'Leary/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

April 15, 2021

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai on Thursday laid out her vision for using trade policy to protect the planet and combat climate change, and said the United States must be a leader in preventing a catastrophic environmental chain reaction.

Tai said U.S. climate protection efforts should not lead to the export of polluting industries to countries with lower standards, and comprehensive, global action was the only solution to meet such challenges.

She said the World Trade Organization needed new rules to address the current corporate incentives to participate in a “race to the bottom” that put countries with higher environmental standards at a competitive disadvantage.

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal)