The financial crisis should be recognized as a very clear example of how the free trade and free market theory has failed, why the WTO should turn around away from this neo-liberal model and allow for all services and trade to be at the service of people and the planet, not of corporate profits.
Dr. Pedro Paez talks about the creation of a new financial architecture in Latin America, based on principles of redistribution, environmental sustainability and social cohesion rather than market principles that dominated the old architecture.
The controversial General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) of the World Trade Organisation has generated major social concern about the implications for the equitable provision of basic public services.
This paper highlights the negative effects of liberalisation of trade and investment within weaker economies and, in particular, how EU trade agreements undermine existing efforts towards developmental integration in ACP regions.
The agrarian sector launched a national strike in Colombia which spread quickly across other sectors, against the impacts of the FTA with the US and Canada. It is evident that the current economic model has failed as a result of a combination of several factors, structurally and historically.
Cecilia Olivet, Pietje Vervest, Giorgina Garibotto et al.
01 February 2013
This beginners' guide provides a critical perspective on EU’s trade and investment policies and the business interests they serve. TNI worked on the guide with a Europe-wide network of trade activists, belonging to the Seattle to Brussels network.
For fairer and more democratic societies, people need to claim control over the EU’s trade and investment policy processes. We need to change EU’s trade and investment policies and the way in which decisions are made.
Corporations, backed by lawyers, use international investment agreements to scavenge for profits by suing Europe’s crisis countries. While speculators making risky investments are protected, ordinary people have no such protection and – through harsh austerity policies – are being stripped of basic social rights.
Pietje Vervest, Timothé Feodoroff, Giorgina Garibotto et al.
06 March 2014
A briefing that explores how a trade agreement currently being negotiated between the US and the EU could open the way to multi-billion euro lawsuits from companies wanting to expand “fracking” for shale gas and oil.
The EU's launch of negotiations for Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreements (DCFTAs) with four Arab countries in transition – Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia - looks set to entrench an economic model that was one of the root causes of the Arab Spring.
Free trade or slave trade? How the EU's free trade agreements in Colombia and Peru reward human rights abuses, destroy livelihoods, promote land grabbing and strip governments of their sovereignty to regulate capital flows.
The Mexico-EU FTA after seven years in force shows how the objectives that were announced during negotiations and that it purportedly promoted were nothing more than rhetoric in light of the evidence of economic and social impacts it has caused.
The case of Newmont Mining vs Indonesia is a powerful example of how investment agreements are used by companies to get exemptions from government regulations and legislation, undermining democracy and development.
Pietje Vervest, Hilde van der Pas, Roos van Os, Roeline Knottnerus
27 January 2015
Dutch investment treaties (BITs) are frequently used by foreign companies to sue governments in the North and South for policies that might harm their future profits. 75% of these cases were brought by mailbox companies with no real economic substance in the Netherlands, making use of the vast web of Dutch BITs and the rights and protection given to foreign investors.
In March 2014 the European Commission received the negotiation mandate from the EU member States to start negotiating an Investment treaty with Myanmar. But what do BITS mean in practice? Is it in the best interest of the Myanmar public?
Citizens and policy makers around the world are increasingly questioning the trade agreement system, especially the investor-state dispute settlement mechanism (ISDS) that enables foreign investors to bypass the legal system of host states and sue governments before private tribunals for any policy, democratically passed law, or judgment of a court that adversely affects them.