The Week Ahead in International Trade: Earth Day begins week of green talk

Mon 22 Apr 2024
Posted by: Benjamin Roche

This week sees particular focus on green trade and sustainability. Today’s Earth Day celebrations come alongside an EU report on climate change, while the International Energy Agency (IEA) is due to release stats on trade in electric vehicles (EVs) tomorrow. There are also further evidence sessions held by the Business and Trade Committee, as well as the next in this year’s series of elections.

Earth Day

Today (22 April) is Earth Day, an international day marking the need for environmental protection. It comes hot on the heels of comments by the UK Climate Change Committee’s chief executive, Chris Stark, (CCC) that prime minister Rishi Sunak had “set us back” on net zero carbon emission targets, reported in the Guardian.

Earth Day is also when the EU Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) is due to release its European State of the Climate report, which gives insights into the global progress of climate change, as well as a close-up look at how the process is affecting Europe, which last year’s report described as “the fastest-warming continent on Earth”.


It’s not the only report out today – the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) publishes its industrial trends survey today, too. There are also S&P Global flash manufacturing and services PMI numbers for the EU, UK, US and Japan, among others, released tomorrow (23 April).

Tomorrow, the IEA publishes another report relevant to the green transition as it releases its Global EV Outlook for 2024. The analysis “identifies and discusses recent developments in electric mobility across the globe” and includes up-to-date stats on international trade in EVs.


In the UK, the Business and Trade Committee hears evidence from speakers including David Henig, director of the UK Trade Policy Project at European Centre for International Political Economy, on export-led growth tomorrow morning. In the afternoon, the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee will also take evidence on UK trade policy in food and agriculture.

Another in this year’s long list of elections comes on Wednesday (24 April), meanwhile, as North Macedonia holds the first round of its presidential election. The southeastern European state votes as tensions simmer over ambitions to join the EU and demands from existing bloc member Bulgaria, its neighbour, according to a recent report by the FT. Elsewhere in the EU, there is the Ifo Business Climate report for Germany to look forward to on Wednesday.

Thursday (25 April) is ANZAC Day, commemorating the Australia and New Zealand Army Corps that served in the First World War. It’s also the day that the US releases its GDP figures for Q1, which come after an unexpected rise in inflation to 3.5% in the latest assessment, published earlier this month.

There are also UK automotive production statistics from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), shedding further light on the industry after the IEA’s report.

Rounding out the week on Friday (26 April) is the next phase in India’s bumper election, its second polling day, and preliminary Q1 GDP figures for Germany. Japan also makes its latest decision on interest rates following the first increase in the country’s rate for 17 years last month.

Other dates for the diary

Monday: European Central Bank (ECB) president Christine Lagarde gives Yale lecture

Tuesday: UK ONS figures published on public sector finances

Wednesday: Annual regional economic activity by GDP figures

Thursday: OECD Taxing Wages report published

Friday: French consumer confidence survey published

Saturday: South Africa marks 30th anniversary of its first multiracial elections

Sunday: Special meeting of World Economic Forum begins in Saudi Arabia