Advancing the People’s Trade Agenda

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  • Create Date April 15, 2016
  • Last Updated February 18, 2020

Advancing the People’s Trade Agenda

Two decades since the establishment of the World Trade Organization (WTO), over 60 agreements and numerous ministerial trade negotiations have led to empty promises that continue to fail developing countries and their people. Throughout its existence, the WTO’s mandate to set rules for an international trading order has resulted in unfettered liberalization causing far-reaching and disastrous impacts in the economy, agriculture sector and food systems of people in the developing world.

IBON International's new policy paper critiques the WTO and how it failed the poorest of the poor by advancing the interests of developed states and their corporations to abandon the implementation of policies being pushed by developing states to rectify injustices in the trading system and to introduce a set of ‘new issues’ that are beyond traditional trade concerns spanning from investment, competition, intellectual property, state-owned enterprises to policies on government procurement.

The policy paper also calls for a People's Trade Agenda that requires states to uphold: (1) Sovereignty and people's rights; (2) Democratic decision-making process that involves all sectors of society; (3) Solidarity, mutual cooperation and complementarity among states; (4) Friendship and peaceful co-existence free from foreign aggression; (5) Environmental sustainability; and (6) Accountability to the people.

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