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Subsidies

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With over 10 years of experience, the IISD Global Subsidies Initiative (GSI) is widely recognized as world-class leader in the quantification, evaluation and reform of subsidies.

Governments around the world spend at least a trillion dollars a year on subsidies to exploit the world's natural resources. But faced with increasing fiscal constraints, and concerned about making their economies cleaner, more inclusive and stable, governments are under increasing pressure to change course.

GSI works closely with governments to help them move away from subsidies that hinder sustainability. The goal is to encourage individual governments to undertake unilateral reforms on subsidy policy where these would deliver clear economic, environmental and social benefits. GSI also aims to generate a consensus in the World Trade Organization and in other forums on the need to take resolute, ongoing and systematic action to reduce or eliminate subsidies that are trade-distorting and undermine sustainable development.

  • Blog
    Making the International Trade System Work for Climate Change:  Five Ways to Address Fossil Fuel Subsidies through the WTO and International Trade Agreements

    Making the International Trade System Work for Climate Change: Five Ways to Address Fossil Fuel Subsidies through the WTO and International Trade Agreements

    Can the international trade system be a catalyst for reforming fossil fuel subsidies (FFSs) to help relieve the burden on the public purse, reduce local and global air pollution, improve energy security and tackle climate change? 

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  • Blog
    Better Datasets Urgently Needed To Understand Full Scale of Fossil Fuel Subsidies

    Better Datasets Urgently Needed To Understand Full Scale of Fossil Fuel Subsidies

    Nature magazine recently released a letter detailing how fossil fuel subsidies reform could deliver carbon emission reductions of between 1 and 4 per cent globally by 2030. This is what we think...

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  • Policy Brief
    Indonesia Energy Subsidy News Briefing January 2018

    Indonesia Energy Subsidy News Briefing January 2018

    This update provides a look at State Budgets from 2017 and 2018, as well as an assessment of liquefied petroleum gas, coal, transport fuels and electricity subsidies. A list of recent GSI reports and commentaries is also included.

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  • Briefing Note
    India Energy Subsidy January 2018

    India Energy Subsidy January 2018

    A briefing on issues related to energy subsidies, energy policy and sustainable development in India. 

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  • Report
    Energy Pricing Reforms in the Gulf: A trend but not (yet) a norm

    Energy Pricing Reforms in the Gulf: A trend but not (yet) a norm

    This GSI paper summarizes recent fossil fuel subsidy reforms in the Gulf countries of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Qatar, putting them in the context of wider developmental challenges and calling for more focused international support to energy pricing reforms in the region. 

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  • Report
    Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform and the Just Transition: Integrating approaches for complementary outcomes

    Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform and the Just Transition: Integrating approaches for complementary outcomes

    This paper goes into detail about the various ways in which FFSR can be consistent with just transition. The scale of current fossil fuel subsidies in the world coupled with the massive financial needs for transition are early indicators of the benefits of approaching FFSR with just transition in mind. 

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  • Report
    India's Energy Transition: Mapping subsidies to fossil fuels and clean energy in India

    India's Energy Transition: Mapping subsidies to fossil fuels and clean energy in India

    This report maps out the context, magnitude, trends and impacts of India’s energy subsidies. It aims to enhance transparency and dialogue on energy choices in India and to help track shifts in government support from fossil fuels to renewables.

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  • Blog
    Ending Coal: From diplomacy to implementation

    Ending Coal: From diplomacy to implementation

    We need to bring an end to coal—in a sustainable and economically inclusive way. Ivetta Gerasimchuk explains how.

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  • Report
    Gender and Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform: An audit of data on energy subsidies, energy use and gender in Indonesia

    Gender and Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform: An audit of data on energy subsidies, energy use and gender in Indonesia

    This study provides an initial investigation into LPG subsidies and their reform and gender in Indonesia by examining the available data on household use of energy and relevant gender issues.

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  • Briefing Note
    India Energy Subsidy October 2017

    India Energy Subsidy October 2017

    A briefing on issues related to energy subsidies, energy policy and sustainable development in India. 

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