In considering the development of an environmental goods and services information exchange tool, we propose that the following basic informational elements form the foundational content of EGSIE.
Individual economy's views or proposals on environmental goods and services, or links to these: Documents detailing domestic and regional efforts to define or categorize the environmental goods and services industry; domestic and regional research guides or manuals for the environmental goods and services industry; domestic and regional reports or studies on EGS, the environmental industry, environmental markets or environmental companies. Users will be encouraged to upload similar documents from their economies. Discussions and discussion threads would be available for review and comment on major topics like the existing APEC EGS framework, new and existing APEC project proposals, etc.
Information on how/where a particular environmental good or service is used and produced: Organized by industry category and subcategory, the site would be populated with basic information on each EGS category or segment. Information could be organized by specific pieces of equipment (e.g reverse osmosis drinking water filtration) or services (e.g. landfill design and construction) and more broadly by process or result desired, integrating goods and services (timeline of a remediation project from identification and characterization, feasibility study, remedial design, remediation construction, site closure). Sample project reports, flow charts, diagrams or case studies could be used. Accredited Members of the EGSIE community could post more specific uses. All of the content can be cross-referenced easily.
Information on the environmental, developmental and other benefits that arise from environmental goods or services: Developmental benefits can be characterized drawing on existing studies from a number of governments and NGOs. Again organized by industry segment and sub-segment, the site would be populated with some basic information and easily cross-referenced.
Tariff information or links to economies' tariff schedules, such as a tariff finder tool, and links to economies' services commitments under the WTO General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS): Existing economies' tariffs schedules and GATS services schedules will be either uploaded and/or made available in some form, or links will be provided to existing tariff websites. Economies with special tariff-finder tools could provide links to those.
Information on the various market barriers that exist for environmental goods and services: Studies on market barriers to the development of EGS and EGS industries on a local, national and global level will be identified and made available, including those focused on regulations and enforcement as market drivers, on financing the development of environmental technology, on financing environmental projects in general, etc. Studies identifying the tariff and non-tariff trade barriers to the international flow of EGS will also be included. For example, we expect to make available China's study on environmental services, and Australia and Japan's study on environmental goods (if endorsed).
Information on the relationship between specific environmental goods and services: The integration of goods and services in most environmental projects provides ample examples of the relationship between specific environmental goods and services. Case study projects could be selected and narratives, diagrams or flow charts will be used to simplify the description of the process from project identification, evaluation, design, equipment specification, modification, installation and operation.
Information on businesses in the APEC region involved in consuming/producing/delivering EGS: Economies, provinces, states, and international economic regions each have undertaken individual efforts to research and accumulate directories of providers of EGS. These directories could be aggregated and re-formatted into a consistent structure allowing some measure of uniform classification and consistent presentation. Entry screens could be structured to allow individual companies to make entries into the EGS provider database and for economic development officers, government officials or trade associations involved in EGS to submit directories or multiple listings of EGS companies.
Significant market opportunities in the APEC region for EGS, including major environmental projects: Listings of environmental projects are available from a variety of sources, including private sector, government at the federal, state and provincial level, international agencies like World Bank, ADB, IADB, OAS etc. These could be aggregated in a project listing library indexed by segment size and scope. There could also be an active project posting forum.
Major EGS research and development initiatives in the region: Ongoing projects with particular relevance to APEC and the region's desire for productive commerce in EGS will receive prominent attention. Links to prominent institutes and government agencies and their respective experts will also be provided, for example EGS reports and studies published by an agreed upon list of institutions such as OECD, UNCTAD, World Bank, Universities.
Export Promotion Programs in EGS: Several advanced economies have active programs to promote EGS. Profiles of these programs, their organization, history and interaction would provide useful models for transition economies in their efforts to support export activities of their own EGS companies. It would also provide a central point of reference or contact for information on EGS companies in each participating economy.
EGS Project Funding Programs: Multilateral entities like World Bank, Asian Development Bank, Inter-American Development Bank provide ongoing access to funds for projects in need in the region and contract opportunities for companies and contractors across the region. Profiles of these entities and their procurement requirements and even specific projects and procurement officers could be listed. Other entities may be non-profits, foundations and other NGOs that issue requests for proposals (RFPs) for EGS-related projects. Private companies looking for projects and third parties like carbon traders or brokers developing Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) may also be attractive to EGSIE visitors.