A wide variety of civil society representatives and experts from the global Our World Is Not for Sale (OWINFS) network, present in Geneva for the 8th Ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO), voiced their opposition to the idea of a standstill on tariffs in the WTO proposed within the “Pledge Against Protectionism” circulated today by a group of mostly developed countries.
This afternoon, a group of civil society from the global Our World Is Not for Sale (OWINFS) network, present in Geneva for the 8th Ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO), sent a message to negotiators entering the closing plenary of the 8th Ministerial in Geneva using the Occupy Wall Street tactic of “Mic Check!”
We Demand Jobs and Industrial Development Policy Space
We Demand the Right to Protect the Policy Space for Development
WTO Rules Must Facilitate Financial Stability Rather than Financial Deregulation
Access to Health and Affordable Medicines before Patent Monopolies
We Demand Trade Rules that Support Food Security and Sovereignty
Protecting Biodiversity and the Banning the Patenting of Life
The WTO Is Not the Venue to Establish Climate Change Policy
Tonight, a group of civil society from the global Our World Is Not for Sale (OWINFS) network, present in Geneva for the 8th Ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO), interrupted a United States business cocktail reception using the Occupy Wall Street tactic of “Mic Check!”
Any country undergoing accession faces tough questions about the price paid for the benefit received.
While accessions are being promoted as a highlight of this Ministerial meeting, it is noteworthy that these are the first since the onset of the global economic crisis.
Over 50 civil society experts – trade unionists, farmers, development advocates, and consumer activists – from 30 countries have traveled to Geneva for the 8th Ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO), working through the global Our World Is Not for Sale (OWINFS) network and the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC). Today they joined local Geneva activists at the “Occupy WTO” tent across from the CICG conference center, where they presented critiques of the current negotiations within the WTO, and offered a path forward for the transformation of the current trading system to provide solutions to the current crises of unemployment, poverty, and the under-regulated financial services sector.
What are the key issues that will be determined at the 8th Ministerial Conference (MC8) of the WTO?
How do these decisions relate to the development mandate of the Doha Round, and the global crisis of unemployment?
How is the WTO responding to international demands for increased international and national oversight over financial services?
What impact are WTO accessions having on the populations of the acceding countries?
This Analytical Note provides an overview of the following: issues at stake in MC8 for developing countries and key messages for Ministers; the state of play including the main events that took place in the production of the ‘Elements for Political Guidance’ text; the legal status of the Chairman’s Statement as the outcome document of the Ministerial; important process issues to be mindful of during the Ministerial; a detailed look at the issues in the ‘Elements for Political Guidance’ text; and a paragraph by paragraph analysis of the ‘Elements’ text.
Inexplicably, the WTO has yet again announced an accelerated schedule of negotiations this spring, after some governments agreed at the November 2010 meetings of the G20 to push for a conclusion the Doha Round of WTO expansion negotiations in 2011.
OWINFS encourages social movements and civil society organizations concerned about the impacts of the WTO on workers, farmers, women, the environment, and our future, to organize national pressure immediately on your Trade Minister and other national officials!