Policy: Competing interests
According to some academic institutions, there are three meta principles that regulators and regulatory agencies need to subscribe to are credibility, legitimacy, and transparency. They constitute the path regulators need to negotiate in order to walk the tightrope of balancing competing interests in pursuit of good public policy.
But as globalization deepens, the public policies can not only hold domestically, within one’s bloc even, since their effect undeniably is not self-contained.
Isn’t this obvious with the issue of biofuels ban for the (alleged) cost of (health and well-being of) hundreds of thousands of European consumers to the ASEAN producers, namely Malaysia and Indonesia, whose palm oil workers (Malaysia: 3.2 million people whom are mostly rural farmers struggling with poverty) rely heavily on the industry for their livelihood? While lower emissions and affected natural habitat are cited, the ‘push’ made by consumer agencies in the EU will be brought forward by the respective countries affected to the World Trade Organization.
While scenes on the Brussels floor were aired, just where was the objective media coverage on the protest in Malaysia and Indonesia?
Weren’t the three biggest political groups in the EU’s assembly behind the amendment sponsorship to draft the law on renewable energy that calls for reducing to zero “the contribution from biofuels and bioliquids produced from palm oil” as of 2021?
These activists and agencies need to be investigated; particularly those who funded them. Should the matter go to a ‘media war’ before a bloc war?
Has it been forgotten that the concept of sustainable development include all these pillars: social, environmental, economic, policies and institutions?
Rather, it becomes obvious in today’s protectionist climate of organized corporate lobbying mobilizing ‘public interest’ into leverage, despite criticisms, especially if producing countries are off one’s bloc.
Do these representatives semanticize ‘fairplay’, ‘impact’ and ‘sustainable’? According to the WTO, non-tariff measures (NTMs) may legitimately safeguard consumers, but they may also be used for protectionist purposes.