Dismantling the Power of TNCs & Reclaiming Development Alternatives

06 December 2011
06 December 2011


With Pablo Solon, Nnimmo Bassey, Brid Brennan, Francesco Martone, David Fig

In the context of the global systemic crisis, transnational corporations have been at center stage. We have seen banks and credit rating agencies accumulate profits out of the crisis, but the TNCs are also profiteering in food speculation and from the climate crisis. Despite the de-legitimation of the TNCs’ political and economic power by the collapse of the neoliberal model, the TNCs are repositioning and reinventing themselves. They have been the main beneficiaries of government bail-outs, while the people have been left to bear the brunt of the crisis. The wave of austerity measures sweeping Europe and spreading to other parts of the world represent serious threats to peoples’ rights.

The operations of the TNCs in countries of the South are driven by competition and a grab for natural resources and extraction of raw materials using cheap labor and rampant take-over of land and communities' territories. The outcome is the devastation of the lands and natural resources and the destruction of the livelihoods and living conditions of the people in those communities. In terms of environmental effects, the consequences are fatal for our planet Earth.

During the past decades, an architecture of impunity has been built to provide legal protection for TNCs - through Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), Bi-lateral Investment Treaties (BITs), and other mechanisms of the international trade and investment regime. More recently, TNCs are aggressively developing new business enterprises on the financialisation of natural resources and the marketisation of the environmental agenda.

Social movements and civil society organizations as well as affected communities are campaigning against these corporate crimes and responding to the challenge to not only strengthen resistance but also develop strategies to dismantle their power.

Co-organizers: Biowatch, Corporate Europe Observatory, Ecologistas En Acción, Enlazando Alternativas, Fase, Friends Of The Earth International, Hemispheric Social Alliance, Observatorio De La Deuda En La Globalización, Our World Is Not For Sale (Grupo De Trabajo-Tncs), PACS and Jubilee South Americas