The trade policy implications of European environmental policy are the focus of the study. First, the effects of rising environmental costs on international competitiveness are described in detail, using the foreign trade development of German industry as an example. With the increasing importance of product-oriented environmental protection measures, however, the risk of discriminatory foreign trade effects also increases.
Building on the theory of the political economy of protectionism, the author theoretically and empirically examines and evaluates the protectionist potential of the European Union’s environmental policy instruments.

Overall, the work makes a valuable contribution to the debates on the further development of environmental policy instruments and on the deeper non-discriminatory integration of world trade.

The author works as an advisor in the Federal Ministry of Economics. In 1996-97, he was an expert on environment and development at the OECD.