People, Trade & the Environment
Tools & Information for Activists


August 26, 2003

1. WTO (World Trade Organisation)


CANCUN - DRAFT DECLARATION

  • WTO IN MIDST OF NEGOTIATING FLURRY
  • WTO CIRCULATES DRAFT DECLARATION FOR CANCUN
  • TRADE ENVOYS GIVE THUMBS DOWN TO WTO REFORM PLAN
  • WHO’S WHERE ON THE DRAFT DECLARATION
  • JAPAN REACTS TO DRAFT DECLARATION
  • DECLARATION MERE FRAMEWORK: CORPORATE REACTION

CANCUN - OTHER ISSUES

  • IMF/WORLD BANK LETTER TO WTO
  • WHAT IS AT STAKE IN CANCUN: WORLD BANK
  • WORLD TRADE TALKS HIT ENVIRONMENTAL SNAG
  • NO CONSENSUS ON SINGAPORE ISSUES, BUT PROPONENTS STILL INSIST ON NEGOTIATIONS
  • INDIA TO RESIST NEW ISSUES AT WTO
  • NGO LETTER CALLING FOR NO TALKS ON INVESTMENT
  • COKE FURNISHES ARGUMENT AGAINST INVESTMENT
  • DIPLOMATS KEEPING QUIET OVER TALKS ON GENERIC DRUGS FOR POOR COUNTRIES

CANCUN - MISC.

  • AFRICAN PEOPLE’S DECLARATION AGAINST THE WTO
  • MAUDE BARLOW & NAOMI KLEIN: ENEMIES OF MEXICO
  • FORMER TRADE MINISTER PREDICTS LITTLE PROGRESS IN CANCUN
  • WTO MEETING LATEST BATTLE IN 500 YEAR WAR
  • HEADING INTO CANCUN: OVERVIEW AND ANALYSIS
  • BUSINESS RULES IN THE WTO: WHO PAYS THE PRICE?

WTO - GENERAL

  • CRACKING THE WTO CODE
  • EU AND THE WTO ACCORDING TO THE EU
  • MEXICO FILES THREE COMPLAINTS AGAINST U.S
  • U.S. TRADE SANCTIONS AGAINST COSTA RICA: SHRIMP TURTLE DEBATE CONTINUES

WTO & Agriculture

  • WTO TABLES POOR NATIONS’ BID FOR TRADE REFORMS
  • 17-COUNTRY PAPER ON MODALITIES EVOKES DEVELOPING-COUNTRIES SUPPORT BUT EC ANGER
  • COMMENTS ON US-EC PROPOSAL ON AGRICULTURE
  • DECIPHERING SUBSIDIES
  • PETTIGREW DEFENDS TRADE AGREEMENTS DESPITE BEEF AND WHEAT DISPUTES


2. GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms)

  • US LODGES WTO COMPLAINT AGAINST EUROPE OVER GM FOOD
  • EU DEFENDS BIOTECH CROP RULES
  • EU CONFIDENT IN ITS CASE


3. IMF (International Monetary Fund) & The World Bank

  • IMF/WB ANNUAL MEETINGS: SEPT 23-24
  • STAKES ARE HIGH ON IMF-ARGENTINA NEGOTIATIONS


4. FTAA (Free Trade Area of the Americas) & NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement)

  • U.S. BEEF-PRODUCTS BAN STAYS UNTIL AFTER LABOUR DAY
  • CEC RECEIVES REVISED SUBMISSION AIMED AT ONTARIO POWER PLANTS
  • NAFTA ASKED TO PROBE TOXIC LEAK
  • REGULATORY GAPS LEAVE UTILITIES IN THE DARK
  • ATTACK ON LABOUR AT HEART OF “ANYONE BUT BUSH”
  • FREE TRADE’S VICTIMS TURNING AGAINST BUSH, GOP
  • DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATE CALLS FOR CONTINENTIAL INTEGRATION
  • MIAMI GEARS UP FOR MINISTERS AND PROTESTERS
  • G34 MINISTERIAL IN JANUARY 2004
  • PERU SIGNS TRADE AGREEMENT WITH MERCOSUR


5. Human Rights and Environment

  • INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON HUMAN AND ENVIRONMENTAL RIGHTS
  • MINING FIRMS AGREE TO OBSERVE WORLD HERITAGE SITES
  • CORPORATIONS ADOPT HUMAN RIGHTS NORMS


6. Glossary



People, Trade and the Environment is a publication of the Sierra Club of Canada.This digest is available on-line at http://www.sierraclub.ca/national/trade-env/people-trade-environment/

Many thanks to everyone who has contributed to the publication of this digest. For information or comments, to subscribe or unsubscribe, please contact: Sarah Dover, sdover@magma.ca



1. WTO (World Trade Organisation)

BACK


CANCUN - DRAFT DECLARATION


WTO IN MIDST OF NEGOTIATING FLURRY

BRIDGES Weekly Trade Digest, August 21, 2003

WTO Members are in the midst of two busy weeks of negotiations prior to a final pre-Cancun General Council meeting to be held from 25-26 August. General Council Chair Perez del Castillo has been conducting Heads of Delegation (HOD) meetings every morning, beginning on 11 August after a two-week WTO recess….Smaller groups are meeting during the afternoons and into the night, and groups of Members have tabled a number of key proposals, most significantly in the area of agriculture. As such, real negotiations are finally taking place.

http://www.ictsd.org/weekly/03-08-21/story1.htm

WTO CIRCULATES DRAFT DECLARATION FOR CANCUN

“WTO officials race against the clock ahead of Cancun summit”, AFP, August 24, 2003

After working through the weekend, the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) top official circulated the draft of a declaration to be issued at a crucial ministerial trade summit in Mexico in two weeks… On agriculture, the draft text reflects some elements of a joint EU and US plan, released on August 13, but gives more detail on special provisions for developing countries. It calls for an elimination of export subsidies for products “of particular interest to developing countries”. For remaining products, it proposes reductions “with a view to phasing out, budgetary and quantity allowances for export subsidies”, although it adds that the target phasing-out date is still open for negotiation. Tariff reductions by developed countries should be managed under a “blended” formula involving gentler average cuts for some products, as well as steeper cuts on higher tariffs for others….It addresses another highly controversial area, rules on investment policy, in an apparently contradictory fashion at once proposing that ministers decide to begin negotiations, while also stating that the “situation does not provide a basis for the commencement of negotiations in this area”. http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/afp/20030825/ts_afp/wto_cancun_declaration_030825000448

TRADE ENVOYS GIVE THUMBS DOWN TO WTO REFORM PLAN

Reuters, by Richard Waddington, August 25, 2003

Rich and developing states gave a cool reception on Monday to a plan for kick-starting stalled world trade talks, but stopped short of rejecting it…. “We will continue to work with the chairman as he develops a package for ministerial consideration,” USTR spokesman Richard Mills said. “We maintain a high level of ambition in the key areas of negotiation, particularly agriculture, which is at the heart of the Doha agenda and the key to development.”

http://forbes.com/business/commerce/newswire/2003/08/26/rtr1066198.html

WHO’S WHERE ON THE DRAFT DECLARATION

“WTO negotiators mull compromise”, AFP, August 26, 2003

…David Spencer, Australia’s ambassador to the WTO, said he would voice concerns about parts of the draft declaration, adding: “Overall the ambition in agriculture is very disappointing.” Asked for his reaction, Brazilian ambassador Luiz Felipe de Seixas Correa said he liked the proposal put forward by Brazil, India and a group of other developing countries, better. “It’s a serious proposal that goes in the direction of compromise, it represents now 19 countries, over 63% of world agricultural population,” he said of the developing country plan. However, Japan swiftly registered its opposition. Japanese Farm Minister Yoshiyuki Kamei said in a statement earlier Monday in Tokyo that Japan opposed the draft declaration and wanted it changed ahead of the September 10-14 Mexico meeting.

http://www.bday.co.za/bday/content/direct/1,3523,1417764-6078-0,00.html

JAPAN REACTS TO DRAFT DECLARATION

“Japan Farm Ministry Welcomes New Draft Of WTO Plan -Kyodo”, Dow Jones Business News, August 25, 2003

Japan’s farm ministry Monday welcomed a fresh draft of a ministerial statement to be adopted at a crucial World Trade Organization (news - web sites) meeting in September, saying it will lead to constructive discussions at the upcoming talks, Kyodo News reported.

DECLARATION MERE FRAMEWORK: CORPORATE REACTION

“WTO Revises Declaration for Mexico”, Washington Times, August 25, 2003

…Although no agreement has been made on its contents, the declaration suggests frameworks, mostly without figures, for ministers of the 146-member World Trade Organization to consider at the Sept. 10-14 meeting in the Mexican resort town of Cancun. Meanwhile, top executives of companies including Unilever PLC, Boeing Co. and Pfizer Inc. are urging global trade negotiators to limit their agendas in Cancun to reaching accords on farm subsidies and access to cheap drugs.

http://www.washtimes.com/business/20030824-110949-5867r.htm

CANCUN - OTHER ISSUES

IMF/WORLD BANK LETTER TO WTO

“World Bank And IMF Announce Plans To Support Developing Countries With Trade-Related Adjustment Needs In WTO Round:Reaffirm The Importance Of A Successful Trade Round To Developing Countries”, WTO Press Release, August 20, 2003

World Bank President James D. Wolfensohn and International Monetary Fund Managing Director Horst Kûhler today sent the following letter to Dr. Supachai Panitchpakdi, Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), reiterating the importance of a successful round of multilateral trade talks to developing countries. The letter also reaffirms the two institutions’ commitment to help developing countries adjust to a more open trading environment.


WHAT IS AT STAKE IN CANCUN: WORLD BANK

World Bank Director for International Trade Uri Dadush Explains Why the Upcoming Negotiation Round is Crucial to Developing Countries, August 26, 2003

…From the World Bank’s point of view, what is the best possible outcome of Cancþn?


WORLD TRADE TALKS HIT ENVIRONMENTAL SNAG

Reuters, by Robert Evans, August 25, 2003

Diplomats racing to shape a plan to clinch a new world trade pact by the end of next year ran into trouble Saturday over how far it should be linked to global agreements on protecting the environment….Saturday’s impasse was over whether officials from bodies overseeing implementation of multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) should have a permanent presence at special WTO sessions discussing links between trade and the environment.

http://www.planetark.org/dailynewsstory.cfm/newsid/21970/story.htm

NO CONSENSUS ON SINGAPORE ISSUES, BUT PROPONENTS STILL INSIST ON NEGOTIATIONS ***

TWN Info Service on WTO Issues, August 21, 2003

Attached is a TWN Report by Goh Chien Yen on the situation relating to the Singapore Issues. From recent discussions in the WTO it is clear that a large number developing countries do not want to begin negotiations, and their Ministers have proclaimed themselves, as well as their Ambassadors in Geneva. Yet the proponents, especially the EU and Japan, are still insisting that negotiations must start.

http://www.twnside.org.sg/title/twninfo62.htm

INDIA TO RESIST NEW ISSUES AT WTO

Sify News, August, 26, 2003

Government promised to take adequate measures to resist any move by developed countries to bring in new issues at the WTO meeting at Cancun.

http://sify.com/news/fullstory.php?id=13234414

NGO LETTER CALLING FOR NO TALKS ON INVESTMENT

“CIEL Signs on to Letter to USTR’s Ambassador Zoellick to Oppose the Initiation of Investment Negotiations within the World Trade Organization”

… We believe that investment flows can facilitate sustainable development only when they are properly governed to deliver social and environmental benefits. WTO investment rules would likely strengthen the rights of corporations with respect to foreign investment, without any corresponding obligations governing their behavior. We believe, therefore, that negotiations on international investment agreements should not take place at a time when investors face no binding rules on their conduct developed by international environmental and social bodies.

http://www.ciel.org/Tae/Zoellick_7Aug03.html

COKE FURNISHES ARGUMENT AGAINST INVESTMENT

“Multinationals should face the same rules no matter where they set up shop”, Christian Aid, August 14, 2003

The Coca-Cola factory here has been distributing slurry, billed as ‘fertiliser’, to local farmers. This was later found to contain carcinogens…. Coca-Cola’s Plachimada factory is perfect argument for why the world needs stricter not laxer rules governing multinational companies…. Alarmingly, the argument around regulation is currently moving in the wrong direction. At the World Trade Organisation meeting in Cancun, Mexico, next month, one of the new issues to be debated is the further liberalisation of international investment. This would increase the power of investing companies while making it harder for developing countries to regulate in the public interest.

http://www.americas.org/

DIPLOMATS KEEPING QUIET OVER TALKS ON GENERIC DRUGS FOR POOR COUNTRIES

Associated Press, by NAOMI KOPPEL, August 26, 2003

World Trade Organization negotiators were staying tightlipped Tuesday amid rumors that they are on the verge of striking a deal on the long-deadlocked issue of ensuring that poor countries have access to expensive patented drugs to treat HIV/AIDS and other diseases….WTO Director-General Supachai Panitchpakdi said a deal “seems to be imminent, but not today.” The issue has been put to the bottom of the agenda of a meeting of the WTO General Council that started Tuesday afternoon, meaning it likely will be discussed Wednesday.



CANCUN - MISC.

AFRICAN PEOPLE’S DECLARATION AGAINST THE WTO

Statement issued at the end of joint Africa Trade Network (ATN), Southern African Peoples Solidarity Network (SAPSN) Pre-Cancun Strategy Conference, in Johannesburg 14-17 August 2003, Resisting the WTO, Issued in Johannesburg, August 17, 2003

http://aidc.org.za

MAUDE BARLOW & NAOMI KLEIN: ENEMIES OF MEXICO

“Mexican gov’t leaks “enemies list” of activists toward Cancun”, Published in La Reforma

Approximately 60 activists, intellectuals and leaders from civil organizations are monitored by Mexican authorities because of the 5TH Ministerial Conference of the WTO, in Cancun. A document from the national security, which the Mexican newspaper La REFORMA got access to, enumerates a variety of WTO opponents and includes notable persons, such as representatives of main social movements, parliamentarians, philosophers, journalists and leaders from non-governmental organizations, including those, who organized the campaign against the G8-meeting, in Genua 2001 and formulated the manifest of Genua- where an italian activists has been killed.

http://www.cancun2003.org/en/nav/index.html

FORMER TRADE MINISTER PREDICTS LITTLE PROGRESS IN CANCUN

“We must slip the surly bonds of protectionism”, Globe and Mail, by ROY MacLAREN, August 25, 2003

…What should Canada do? That the Doha Round should never have been foisted on the WTO or that “rounds” themselves are an outdated negotiating procedure cannot now be reversed. Canada, a protagonist of rules-based multilateral trade agreements since the Second World War, has every reason to press on with like-minded countries. However, the prospects of success are currently so dim, Canada should also pursue more trade liberalization in parallel regional and bilateral options.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20030825.wotrade25/BNStory/International/?query=trade

WTO MEETING LATEST BATTLE IN 500 YEAR WAR

Asia-Europe Dialogue and Partners, By Aziz Choudry, August 21, 2003

The Fifth WTO Ministerial Meeting in Cancun, Mexico is drawing closer. For millions of people throughout the Americas there is nothing academic or rhetorical about claims that neoliberalism is the latest wave of colonialism, or that economic globalization and war are two sides of the same coin. It is a lived reality.

http://www.ased.org

HEADING INTO CANCUN: OVERVIEW AND ANALYSIS

“Unequal Protection”, by Jacob T. Levy, August 20, 2003

The round of world trade negotiations launched in in Doha in 2001 is being been kept alive, for now, by a U.S.-E.U. agreement on agricultural protectionism. If the two farm-subsidy superpowers had been unable to agree, then the upcoming World Trade Organizaion (WTO) negotiation summit in Cancþn, Mexico might have collapsed before it had ever even begun. But, in a sense, that might have been preferable.

http://www.tnr.com/doc.mhtml?i=scholar&s=levy082003

BUSINESS RULES IN THE WTO: WHO PAYS THE PRICE?

Friends of the Earth International, REPORT EMBARGOED until August 28, 2003

With two weeks to go before the World Trade Organisation?s (WTO) Ministerial meeting in Cancun, a new report reveals the key role transnational corporations play in shaping the policy of the WTO. ‘Business Rules: Who pays the price?’ will be released on August 28, 2003 and was produced by Friends of the Earth International, the world’s largest grassroots environmental federation, and Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO).

http://www.foei.org/publications/trade/businessrules.pdf

http://www.foei.org/media/2003/0822.html

WTO - GENERAL

CRACKING THE WTO CODE

“Understanding Trade Terms”, Friends of the Earth International

This is a guide to help would-be trade campaigners crack the WTO code.

http://www.foei.org/publications/trade/wtoglossarysnenglish_lowresol.pdf

EU AND THE WTO ACCORDING TO THE EU

WORLD TRADE REPORT 2003

Brussels, 21 August 2003

http://europa.eu.int/comm/trade/issues/newround/eu_wto/wtr03_en.htm

Also “Doha Development Agenda: Making trade work for all”

http://europa.eu.int/comm/trade/icentre/infopack_en.htm

MEXICO FILES THREE COMPLAINTS AGAINST U.S.

Associated Press, by NAOMI KOPPEL, August 18, 2003

Mexico went on the offensive against its powerful northern neighbor Monday, bringing three separate complaints against the United States to the World Trade Organization. Citing a “catalog” of violations of WTO rules, Mexican WTO Ambassador Eduardo Perez Motta demanded reimbursement of more than 10 years’ worth of dumping duties charged by the United States on imports of Mexican cement, and also asked for rulings on the legality of duties on oil pipes and steel plate.


U.S. TRADE SANCTIONS AGAINST COSTA RICA: SHRIMP TURTLE DEBATE CONTINUES

“Sea Turtle Conservation And Shrimp Imports”, Press Statement by Philip T. Reeker,Deputy Spokesman, August 25, 2003 …<>The Department of State determined that Costa Rica no longer meets the requirements set by Section 609 of P.L. 101-162 related to the protection of sea turtles in the course of commercial shrimp harvesting. As a result of this August 14, 2003, determination, importation of shrimp harvested in Costa Rica with commercial fishing technology that may adversely affect endangered sea turtles will be prohibited.

Released on August 25, 2003

http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2003/23521.htm



WTO & AGRICULTURE

BACK


WTO TABLES POOR NATIONS’ BID FOR TRADE REFORMS

The Philippine Star, by Rocel C. Felix, August 26, 2003

The Philippines scored one for the developing countries’ bid to push for more substantial agricultural trade reforms in the forthcoming World Trade Organization (WTO) talks next month in Cancun, Mexico. Agriculture Assistant Secretary Segfredo Serrano Jr. said the WTO tabled for discussions the developing countries demand that talks should include the maintenance of special products (SPs) and special safeguard measures (SSMs) meant to protect their respective agriculture industries against the onslaught of cheap imported farm produce from richer members of the trade body….Recently, the Philippines, Indonesia and 14 other developing economies formed an alliance to strengthen their call to reverse unfair trade practices that have been keeping poor countries from gaining access to the lucrative market of richer countries of the WTO. At the same time, the alliance’s immediate agenda is to ensure that developing countries are able to declare certain agricultural products as sensitive and include these in the list of SPs and SSMs.

http://www.philstar.com/philstar/News200308260712.htm

17-COUNTRY PAPER ON MODALITIES EVOKES DEVELOPING-COUNTRIES SUPPORT BUT EC ANGER

TWN Info Service on WTO Issues, August 22, 2003

The agriculture negotiations in WTO took a dramatic turn when 17 developing countries, including Brazil, India, China, South Africa, put forward a framework paper on modalities as a counter to the US-EC paper of last week….However it was attacked in aggressive tones by the EC representative, who accused the co-sponsors of confrontation, South-North conflict, and of “classical” tactics of aiming at the stars in order to get the moon.

http://www.twnside.org.sg/title/twninfo63.htm

COMMENTS ON US-EC PROPOSAL ON AGRICULTURE

TWN Info Service on WTO Issues, August 20, 2003

Last week the US and EC put forward a draft text on agriculture modalities at the WTO. This text has subsequently been widely criticised, especially by developing countries.

http://www.twnside.org.sg/title/twninfo61.htm

DECIPHERING SUBSIDIES

WTO Web site, August 25, 2003

Want to know the difference between a Swiss formula and a Uruguay Round approach? Making sense of ‘fixed percentage’ and ‘harmonizing’ cuts, the ‘Uruguay Round’ approach, and Swiss formulas.

http://www.wto.org/english/tratop_e/agric_e/agnegs_swissformula_e.htm

PETTIGREW DEFENDS TRADE AGREEMENTS DESPITE BEEF AND WHEAT DISPUTES

“Pettigrew defends value of trade agreements”, The Western Producer, by Adrian Ewins, August 22, 2003

…Wheat and durum shipments to the United States are subject to countervailing duties and anti-dumping tariffs. As well, the U.S. border remains closed to live cattle exports despite scientific evidence that Canada has contained its single case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy and its beef and cattle are safe….Pierre Pettigrew said the lesson is that trade deals are important and should be strengthened and improved.

http://www.producer.com/articles/20030821/market_quotas/20030821mkt03.html



2. GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms)

BACK


US LODGES WTO COMPLAINT AGAINST EUROPE OVER GM FOOD

Deutsche Welle, August 19, 2003

The United States has formally asked the World Trade Organization to declare the EU’s refusal to import most genetically modified organisms (GMOs) as illegal. Backed by Canada and Argentina, the United States on Monday pushed ahead with filing a formal complaint with the World Trade Organization (WTO), requesting it to set up an arbitration panel to investigate the United States’ ongoing trade row with the European Union.

http://www.dw-world.de/english/0,3367,1431_A_951489_1_A,00.html

EU DEFENDS BIOTECH CROP RULES

Associated Press, August 18, 2003

The European Union defended its rules for the sale of genetically modified foods Monday as the United States, backed by Argentina and Canada, asked the World Trade Organization to overturn requirements they see as an unfair trade barrier. The 15-nation EU ended its five-year moratorium on genetically modified food last month but said each product must undergo a scientific risk assessment and have a special label.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20030818.gtcrop0818/BNStory/Technology/?query=trade

EU CONFIDENT IN ITS CASE

“Washington requests WTO dispute panel on GMOs; EU confident of its case:, EurActiv, August 19, 2003

Less than one month before the start of the important Cancun talks on global trade, the US, Argentina and Canada officially requested the WTO for a dispute settlement panel on GMOs. Since several years, the European Union has a “de facto” moratorium on imports of any genetically modified food to Europe. US farmers have reported massive losses because EU rules prevent them from exporting their crops to Europe. The US administration has therefore threatened to appeal to the WTO, claiming that the EU moratorium is illegal because it is not based on scientific evidence of risks to health and the environment.

http://www.euractiv.com/cgi-bin/cgint.exe/860846-437?204&OIDN=1506046&-home=home



3. IMF (International Monetary Fund) & The World Bank

BACK


IMF/WB ANNUAL MEETINGS: SEPT 23-24

IMF Web Site

SEPTEMBER 23-24, 2003, The Boards of Governors of the World Bank Group (Bank) and the Board of Governors of the International Monetary Fund (Fund) normally meet once a year to discuss the work of their respective institutions. The Annual Meetings, which generally take place in September-October, have customarily been held in Washington for two consecutive years and in another member country in the third year.

http://www.imf.org/external/am/2003/about.htm

STAKES ARE HIGH ON IMF-ARGENTINA NEGOTIATIONS

CommonDreams.org, by Mark Weisbrot, August 13, 2003

…The pressure on both sides will be intense, and the outcome could have a serious impact on future economic policy in Latin America and developing countries generally. Argentina owes $14.3 billion to the IMF, $8.5 billion to the World Bank, and $8 billion to the Inter-American Development Bank respectively, about 14, 8, and 20 percent of these institutions’ portfolios. If Argentina defaults to them, it could jeopardize their AAA credit rating. In other words, the banks have a problem.

http://www.americas.org/



4. FTAA (Free Trade Area of the Americas) & NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement)

BACK


U.S. BEEF-PRODUCTS BAN STAYS UNTIL AFTER LABOUR DAY

Canadian Press, By JUDY MONCHUK, August 25, 2003

Truckloads of Canadian beef will not be crossing a partly reopened U.S. border on the initial target date of Sept. 1. Permits to allow some cuts of boneless beef into the United States will not be issued until after the Labour Day weekend, Ed Curlett of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, said from Washington.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/ArticleNews/TPStory/LAC/20030825/UCOWWXB//?query=trade

CEC RECEIVES REVISED SUBMISSION AIMED AT ONTARIO POWER PLANTS

CEC Press Release, August 19, 2003

The Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) has received a revised citizen submission asserting that Canada is failing to effectively enforce the Canadian Environmental Protection Act and the federal Fisheries Act against Ontario Power Generation’s (OPG) coal-fired power plants….The submitters assert that emissions of mercury, sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides from OPG’s coal-powered facilities pollute the air and water downwind, in eastern Canada and northeastern United States.

http://www.cec.org/news/details/index.cfm?varlan=english&ID=2562

NAFTA ASKED TO PROBE TOXIC LEAK

CBC News Online, August 22, 2003

Environmental groups have asked NAFTA’s ecological watchdog to investigate toxic sludge loaded with PCBs leaking into the St. Lawrence River near Montreal. The oily black substance is oozing out of the rock at a former toxic waste site that’s now a high-tech industrial park.

http://montreal.cbc.ca/regional/servlet/View?filename=qc_nafta20032208

REGULATORY GAPS LEAVE UTILITIES IN THE DARK

The Globe and Mail, by BARRIE McKENNA, August 19, 2003

Like it or not, energy deregulation has another black eye less than three years after California’s rolling blackouts and the collapse of Enron Corp. Each one of the major states as well as Ontario affected by last week’s blackout have deregulated their electricity industries in recent years.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/ArticleNews/TPStory/LAC/20030819/RDERE//?query=trade

ATTACK ON LABOUR AT HEART OF “ANYONE BUT BUSH”

“Decisions, Decisions: As labor ponders which Democrat to endorse, it also girds for battle against the GOP in ‘04”, by David Moberg, August 25, 2003

“ It’s not just the loss of jobs3.2 million from the private sector, the worst record at a comparable point in any administration since Herbert Hooverbut the attacks on workplace protections and on unions as institutions, and the unabashed catering to the rich and big corporations. Bush has been “an unmitigated disaster for working people,” says McEntee. AFL-CIO President John Sweeney says, “No previous Republican administration has ever been this malicious on workers’ issues and more determined to seek advantage for corporate America.” And these are the polite comments.

http://www.inthesetimes.com/comments.php?id=324_0_1_0_C

FREE TRADE’S VICTIMS TURNING AGAINST BUSH, GOP

Associated Press, August 25, 2003

…Jobs in many industries have fled overseas since 1993, when Congress passed the Clinton-backed North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA. About half the textile and apparel jobs that existed in 1994 are gone. Since Bush took office in January 2001, it is estimated North Carolina and South Carolina have lost more than 180,000 manufacturing jobs….

http://www.thestate.com/mld/thestate/news/local/6616626.htm

DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATE CALLS FOR CONTINENTIAL INTEGRATION

“Dean’s Bush-bashing talk energizes Austin crowd”, by Ken Herman, AMERICAN-STATESMAN, August 26, 2003

Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean, venturing deep into Bush country, delighted Austin supporters Monday by criticizing the president on the economy, foreign policy and other topics….Dean declared himself a supporter of the North American Free Trade Agreement but said it needs to work more like the European Union, a trade alliance that requires all member nations to adhere to the same standards on such things as occupational safety. Dean said NAFTA’s biggest shortcoming is that it doesn’t require Mexico to improve working conditions.

http://www.statesman.com/metrostate/content/auto/epaper/editions/today/metro_state_f3b45089d416100100e6.html

MIAMI GEARS UP FOR MINISTERS AND PROTESTERS

“Trade ministers, protesters due in Miami for new regional summit”, by Doreen Hemlock, Sun Sentinel, August 25 2003

With just three months to go before Miami hosts a historic Americas trade ministers’ meeting, organizers say they’re on track to raise at least $10 million to fund the event much of it for security to handle as many as 6,000 delegates and 100,000 protesters expected to attend…. “Brazil has the whip hand on whether there will be an FTAA,” said Carl Cira, who heads an Americas think tank at Florida International University and is a coordinator of today’s seminar. “And Brazil’s been saying the FTAA as currently conceived won’t fly because the U.S. is unable to make any meaningful concessions on agriculture,” such as ending its nearly 30-cents-a-gallon tariff on orange-juice imports, Cira said.

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/miami/sfl-zftaaupdate25xaug25,1,7273730.story?coll=sfla-news-miami

G34 MINISTERIAL IN JANUARY 2004

“Americas summit called for January 2004”, Reuters, August 21, 2003

Leaders from across the Americas will discuss social and economic issues at a special summit in Mexico in January amid concerns at growing poverty in Latin America, the Organization of American States said on Thursday. The Mexican foreign ministry said the Free Trade Area of the Americas, the ambitious hemispheric trade pact promoted by Washington, is being dealt with by a separate secretariat and does not need to be on the summit agenda….The FTAA will be tackled in the next hemispheric summit meeting scheduled for Argentina, in 2005.

http://www.cnn.com/2003/WORLD/americas/08/21/americas.summit.reut/

PERU SIGNS TRADE AGREEMENT WITH MERCOSUR

Associated Press, August 26, 2003 Peru and Mercosur trade zone nations signed a free trade deal on Monday aimed at strengthening South American economic integration…. Brazil has been pushing for South American integration in order to give the continent more negotiating power in talks to create a proposed Free Trade Zone of the Americas— stretching from Alaska to Argentina— by 2005. It would surpass the European Union as the world’s largest trading block

http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/181_350570,00020008.htm



5. Human Rights and Environment

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INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON HUMAN AND ENVIRONMENTAL RIGHTS

Tuesday 16 September - Thursday 18 September 2003 in Cartagena, Colombia

Friends of the Earth International

http://www.foei.org/cartagena/index.html

MINING FIRMS AGREE TO OBSERVE WORLD HERITAGE SITES

REUTERS, by Nick Trevethan, August 22, 2003

Fifteen of the world’s largest metal miners and producers have signed an agreement not to operate in world heritage sites like the Taj Mahal and Great Barrier Reef, the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) said this week.

http://www.planetark.org/dailynewsstory.cfm/newsid/21947/newsDate/22-Aug-2003/story.htm

CORPORATIONS ADOPT HUMAN RIGHTS NORMS

Adoption of UN Human Rights Norms for Companies a Welcome Step Forward, Amnesty International, August 14, 2003

Amnesty International today joined with a large number of NGOs in welcoming the adoption by the United Nations of the Norms on the responsibilities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises with regard to human rights. The members of the UN Subcommision adopted the Norms yesterday by unanimous vote. The UN norms and commentary set out in a comprehensive way the key human rights responsibilities of companies, creating a powerful tool for advocates and a useful checklist for those companies keen to improve their human rights performance.

http://www.americas.org/



6. Glossary

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“Chapter 11” …of the NAFTA on Dispute Settlement

CAFTA United States-Central American Free Trade Agreement

DDA Doha Development Agenda

DFAIT Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade

EC European Community

ENGO Environmental non-governmental organization

EU European Union

FTA Free trade agreement

FTAA Free Trade Area of the Americas

GATS General Agreement on Trade in Services

GATT General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade

GMOs Genetically Modified Organisms

HIPC Heavily Indebted Poor Country

IFI International financial institution

ILO International Labor Organization

IMF International Monetary Fund

LDCs Lesser Developed Countries

MEA Multilateral Environmental Agreement

NAFTA North American Free Trade Agreement

NGO Non-governmental organization

OECD Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development

TRIPS Agreement Respecting Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights

UNDP UN Development Programme

USTR US Trade Representative

WB World Bank

WEF World Economic Forum

WHO World Health Organization

WSF World Social Forum

WTO World Trade Organization




Sierra Club of Canada has an active programme on Trade and the Environment. SCC has challenged Chapter 11 through the courts on the S.D.Myers case, played an integral role in the fight against the MAI and works in coalition with the Common Front on the WTO, Common Frontiers and the Canadian Alliance on Trade and the Environment.



FOR INFORMATION OR COMMENTS, TO SUBSCRIBE OR UNSUBSCRIBE, PLEASE CONTACT: Sarah Dover, sdover@magma.ca