On 27 June 2018, the European Commission presented for the first time the 'EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award'. The new prize is intended to recognize and celebrate the performance of cities and their positive impact on social, economic and environmental sustainability in international trade. Particular emphasis is placed on fair and ethical trade initiatives.
The initiatives that took place in Ghent in recent years convinced the European jury to give the main prize to the City of Ghent. Thirteen years after the first Fair Trade Municipality title in Belgium, Ghent now also has the first title of European capital of fair trade.
Although Ghent only bears this title in 2019, the European Commission and ICT already now regard the city as an ambassador.
For example, two events are planned on which the City of Ghent is invited to speak and on which the city in turn wishes to invite the Representation of the Government of Flanders:
- 25.09.2018. New York: On 25 September representatives from the cities of Ghent, Madrid and Lyon will share their experience with fair and ethical trade at an event organized by the International Trade Center and the EU delegation at the UN in New York, as side-event of the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly.
- 02.10.2018 Geneva: On 2 October, attention will be given to the Award at the annual ITC forum, 'Trade for Sustainable Development Forum 2018', which takes place in Geneva from 1 to 3 October. Representation of the City of Ghent will be present.