The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) recently released their Technology and Innovation Report 2023, shedding light on the vast potential that green innovation offers for developing countries. By adopting goods and services that emit and/or leave smaller carbon footprints, these nations can stimulate economic growth, enhance their technological capacities, and contribute to a more sustainable future. The focus of the report is on 17 frontier technologies, including AI, the Internet of Things, and electric vehicles, with a deep analysis on their market size and potential to create jobs. To gain the most from the green tech revolution, developing countries need strategic investments, supportive global trade rules, and policy changes to bridge the gap with developed countries.
The Green Tech Revolution: A myriad of opportunities
Developing countries want to rapidly get onboard the green industry wagon, which presents an opportunity for them. With a fast-paced technology industry, this will help them to better to capitalize on the revolution earlier to reap the benefits of increased productivity, economic growth, and reduced inequalities. These countries want to tap on the potential to transform the production cycles and improve livelihoods, which overall represents a necessity.
Challenges faced by developing countries
Despite the urge to join forces given the promising outlook, many developing countries are finding it hard to catch up with developed nations when embracing green innovation. In comparison, the volume of green technologies’ exports from developed countries has seen a surge, while developing countries are slightly struggling to reach that point. As a result, global exports have declined significantly for developing countries.
Opportunities and Solutions
UNCTAD has called on governments and the international community to reform global trade rules and Intellectual Property rights, to facilitate technology transfer to developing countries. This needs to be done for these countries to bridge the gap and fully harness the potential of green innovation, they must invest in more complex and greener sectors, develop technical skills and scale up investments in technology infrastructure.
Countries like Brazil and China have demonstrated how strong policy responses can lead to capturing economic gains. China’s renewable energy law and solar subsidies, along with private sector initiatives, have stimulated growth of the biomass industry. Other than that, developing countries in Asia, such as India, Philippines, and Vietnam, have also outperformed expectations by investing in infrastructure, enhancing skills, and fostering a conducive business climate.
INLEX and IP in the context of Developing Countries
With financial incentives provided by organizations such as the UNCTAD to developing countries to boost their economies, an increase in investment in such territories is encouraged. An increase in investment naturally means more trade, production of goods, supply of services and consumerism. As such, this calls for a larger presence of goods and services on the market. This comes in harmony with entities wishing to product their creations, products, and anything else that demarks them from the rest of the market. A greater availability of goods on the market calls for a bigger demand for the protection of intellectual property rights.
Benefitting from its physical presence in the heart of the Indian Ocean, INLEX MEA represents the perfect hub to accommodate demands from clients from across the globe to help them protect their trademarks and patents in Africa. Having significant expertise in Africa since 2014 and equipped with a culturally diverse team from Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Mauritius and China, INLEX MEA is ideally geared to cater for all the needs of IP in Africa.
The bottom line
The technology and Innovation report 2023 emphasizes the transformative potential of green innovation for developing countries. By embracing frontier technologies and aligning environmental, technological, and industrial policies, these nations can drive economic growth, create jobs, and protect the planet. However, for developing countries to fully seize the green technological opportunity, it will require strategic investments, supportive global trade rules, and international cooperation. This is the way to lead a sustainable and prosperous future.