Malmö: EU City for Fair and Ethical Trade 2021

The Swedish city of Malmö has been declared the winner of the EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award 2021.

EU Trade Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis, announcing the winning city on 16 October at an event live-streamed from Ghent, Belgium, said that Malmö won for its holistic approach to integrating fair and ethical trade into its multicultural community of consumers, businesses and civil society, innovative policies and a forward-looking strategy.

The Geneva-based International Trade Centre (ITC) will provide technical assistance to implement a development project proposed as part of the winning bid. The European Commission’s Directorate-General for Trade will support ITC with €100,000 to help implement the project.

‘This award recognizes that in today’s interconnected world, making more sustainable choices at the local level in the European Union will have positive ripple effects on people’s livelihoods and the environment,’ ITC Executive Director Pamela Coke-Hamilton said. ‘My hope is that we can scale up these kinds of interventions all across the globe and other cities can learn from the excellent example set by Malmö.’

The jury noted that Malmö stood out as an interconnected city with a global impact and an inspiring vision. This approach was combined with exciting projects in the city and developing countries on novel topics such as e-waste.

The city has demonstrated its commitment to tackling new challenges such as circular production, human rights diligence, and ultimately making it “easy for everyone in the city to do the right thing” − which is the city’s motto.

Malmö takes the title from inaugural winner Ghent, and will hold the honour throughout 2021.



Bremen received the Special Mention for Global Partnerships & Outlook for numerous alliances and partnership initiatives on topics from reusable packaging and human rights diligence along supply chains to the cross-cutting Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) e-Budget initiative.  



Gothenburg received the Special Mention for Public Procurement for a holistic approach to sustainable public procurement and innovative approaches.

Jelenia Góra


The city of Jelenia Góra received a Special Mention as a Rising Champion, to commend its strong commitment to fair and ethical trade as a newcomer.



Neumarkt received the Special Mention for Community Engagement for supporting local communities with sustainable development-centred learning programmes, including providing grants to small-scale projects run by schools or NGOs in this area.



Stuttgart received the Special Mention for Monitoring Impact for an effective, measurable and innovative Monitoring and Evaluation System, inspiring other cities to improve SDG-based monitoring systems and inform future actions and policymaking.

The EU Cities for Fair and Ethical Trade Award is an initiative of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Trade implemented by the International Trade Centre.