This chapter deals with the potential overall impact on patterns of international trade of industrialized country actions to limit emissions of greenhouse gases, chiefly carbon dioxide.

The economic issues are complex, because they involve a balance between several different effects:

• Measures to limit emissions will reduce demand for fossil fuels: certainly for coal and probably for oil (the impact on gas is more uncertain and could be positive). This will tend to reduce both the overall volume of fossil fuel exports and their price. For reasons discussed below, this issue particularly concerns developing country oil exporters.