Swedish companies hope COP21 deal means business

Traffic in Stockholm, Sweden. (Jonathan Nackstrand / AFP)
Stockholm, Sweden. (Jonathan Nackstrand / AFP)
The Swedish business sector hopes that the UN climate agreement could give a boost to Swedish companies.

During the climate negotiations in Paris, representatives of the international business community were pushing for a recognition of the role that private companies can have for improving the climate.

“We’re here, we’re involved, and we’re in it for the long haul,” said John Danilovich, Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce in a statement.

Role of private enterprise

Swedish businesses were represented in Paris by, among others, the director of energy and climate policies at the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise, Maria Sunér Fleming. At a seminar in Stockholm this week, she said she felt that there was a very positive momentum in Paris from the business sector.

“For the first time, I could feel that the international business sector was really united in actually wanting a target and wanting to be involved in the climate actions in the future,” she told Radio Sweden.

According to Sunér Fleming, there was disappointment in the business community that the importance of private enterprise did not get any mention in the final agreement. Nevertheless, now that the agreement has been reached, she believes it could play a positive role for Swedish companies.

“In the long run, companies that have products and services that goes hand in hand will the low carbon economy will benefit from this agreement, because this will of course create a bigger market and a bigger demand for these kind of products,” said Sunér Fleming.

More even playing field

She also sees the agreement as a step towards a more even playing field, when it comes to competition.

“What I hope is that we will see a convergence of the climate work in different regions and countries over the world, so that – in the future – companies will meet the same demands no matter where they are,” she said.

“Right now, European companies have stricter demands and they have a price on carbon, which many of their competitors in other regions and countries don’t meet. Of course, in the long run, it would become an obstacle if competitors can operate without having any demands on carbon reductions and efficiency, but European countries have and it will start to cost them money,” said Maria Sunér Fleming from the Confederation for Swedish Enterprise.

Related stories from around the North:

Canada: COP21 – View from Canada’s Northwest Territories, Eye on the Arctic

Finland:  Mixed reactions in Finland to Paris climate accord, Yle News

Greenland:  Paris – A COP-out for Arctic Peoples?, Ice-Blog

Sweden: Positive reaction to climate deal in Sweden, Radio Sweden

United States:  Warming evident in Arctic air and waters: report, Alaska Dispatch News


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