The EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award is an initiative of the European Commission, which the Directorate-General for Trade (DG Trade) launched as a commitment of its “Trade for all” communication on trade and investment policy, published in 2015. The new award aims to recognize and celebrate cities’ achievements and positive impact in the areas of social, economic and environmental sustainability in international trade. A particular emphasis is given to fair and ethical trade schemes, as well as other non-governmental sustainability schemes, which may bring more sustainable opportunities to small producers in third countries and thus support sustainable and inclusive development.
The Award is part of the EU’s efforts to raise awareness about how purchasing decisions of EU consumers can affect the environment and livelihoods of people in other countries – and the role that cities and local authorities have to play. Informed decision-making of EU consumers and the role of cities as platforms for increasing information flows about such sustainability schemes are at the core of this Award.
Cities have the opportunity to showcase what is being done to raise awareness about fair and ethical trade at a city level – and to learn about new approaches from other cities and local authorities through exchange of good practices, ideas, initiatives, and innovations. The Award is a new opportunity for cities to raise their international profile and to gain inspiration from the experience of other EU cities in enhancing trade’s contribution to the Global Goals for Sustainable Development.
Phrenos managed the entire Award conceptualization and implementation as well as acting as the Secretariat for the Europe-wide application process. Furthermore, Phrenos implemented the entire communication strategy, including maintaining and growing the online visibility of the Award.