On 5 September 2015 a very large majority of the Frente Amplio, the governing political coalition in Uruguay voted against continuing to be part of the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) negotiations taking place in Geneva. These plurilateral negotiations are taking part outside the framework of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and its General Agreement on Services (GATS) and have generated concerns over the adverse impacts of the type of services liberalization pushed for by developed countries led by the United States, the European Union and Australia.
It is increasingly evident that the TiSA negotiations are an attempt to pressure developing countries to grant greater liberalisation in sectors of interest to the US and other industrialised countries, without the latter having to pay any price for it.
The Frontlines Initiative is a joint project of four national public sector unions - the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW), the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC), the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) and the National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) - which joins forces with sister unions in Colombia to fight against the privatization of public services and to strengthen each other’s struggles to defend human and labour rights. The delegation in Colombia received an important briefing on the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA), a proposed international trade treaty that, if ratified, will put public services in Colombia, Canada and 48 other countries at extreme risk.
Several developing countries on Wednesday (July 8) expressed their frustration with the World Trade Organization (WTO) Director-General Roberto Azevedo's announcement that the work program with precise modalities for concluding the Doha Development Round (DDR) trade negotiations will not be delivered by end-July.
Some 341 global civil society organisations (CSOs) on Wednesday underlined that if the upcoming tenth ministerial conference (MC10) of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to be held in Nairobi, Kenya is to be a "success", it must deliver on development and turn around the WTO.
Major developing countries - China, India, Brazil, and South Africa - unambiguously rejected on Friday (July 3), a proposal from Canada to set "new landing zones" in the Doha agriculture package without adhering to the existing mandates that were negotiated since 2001, trade envoys told the SUNS.
Kenya's foreign minister, Ms. Amina Mohamed, said here on Wednesday (July 1) that the Doha Development Agenda (DDA) negotiations cannot be concluded without "credible" developmental outcomes at the World Trade Organisation (WTO)'s tenth ministerial conference in Nairobi later in the year, several trade envoys told the SUNS.
Major developed countries, particularly the United States and the European Union, have vehemently opposed a proposal from the G-33 coalition for a permanent solution for public stockholding programmes for food security in the developing countries, several trade envoys told SUNS.
A proposal floated by the World Trade Organization Director-General Roberto Azevedo during his meetings with seven major developed and developing countries to bring about convergence on the domestic support pillar of the Doha agriculture package has now surfaced in a non-paper issued by Australia and Canada, several trade envoys told the SUNS.
A report presented by the World Trade Organization Director-General Roberto Azevedo on Wednesday (June 17) about his consultations with select trade envoys in different configurations raised more questions than answers over the continued attempts to rescue one major developed country which remains opposed to a developmental outcome in the domestic support pillar of the agriculture package for concluding the Doha Development Agenda (DDA) trade negotiations by the end of the year.