African Industrial Workshop: Africa—Regional Industrial Review

United Nations Environment Programme (2002)

Industrial activity is a major contributor to many of the environmental and social problems facing society today. Industrial activity has, however, the potential to make an important contribution to achieving a sustainable society. It has been recognized that a key determinant of success for sustainable development is the linking of trade and environment. Rapid globalization, initiated in part by advances in communications technology, has facilitated the integration of national systems of production and finance, resulting in the growth of cross-border flows of goods, services and capital. Concepts and systems of manufacture have rapidly changed. This has had both negative and positive consequences for sustainability and has led to disagreements between developed and developing countries and within countries themselves. There are increased tensions between trade and environmental policies and issues. Environmental issues are becoming globalized, and it is now well recognized that many actions and impacts in one region have global impacts. As a result, environmental issues are increasingly becoming part of trade issues.

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