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:: Across the board ::

This section contains news and analysis of sweeping developments that affect the overall push and pull towards FTAs and bilateral investment treaties. This means major trends relating to bilateralism, often with global consequences, and other cross-cutting issues. New developments arising from US politics, the WTO or South-South alliance-building, for instance, are often reported here as they tend to have systemic impacts.

last update: May 2012


UNESCO adopts convention to protect diversity
The United Nations cultural body adopted an international treaty Thursday to protect cultural diversity. This a moral victory, but the real test is whether developing countries will resist US pressure to commit their audiovisual and information services to bilateral trade agreements.
The dynamics of regional trading arrangements
There has been a spate of trade agreements signed between countries in recent years - from the same region and even beyond. And this may not necessarily have to do with the fact that it has been a tough going for the multilateral trading system. Regionalism may have its own dynamics.
Dangerous liaison
Under the guise of freeing trade, bilateral trade agreements (BTAs) are being used as a tool to further an absolute top-down Northern agenda, at the victimization of the poor and marginalized groups and communities of the South.
Developed world undermining WTO spirit through FTAs
FTAs are being designed by the developed countries to get more than what the WTO and TRIPS could give at this stage.
Specter of failure haunts WTO trade talks
"The consequences of failure would be an even further switch to [bi-lateral] Free Trade Agreements [FTAs] and long-term weakness for multilateral trade. Trade would become more discriminatory," said Razeen Sally, visiting senior research fellow at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore.
Islamic common market proposed
The first World Islamic Economic Forum yesterday called for the establishment of an Islamic common market and floated a series of initiatives to boost business cooperation amongst Muslim nations.
OIC members urged to look towards establishing Islamic FTA
Governments and the private sectors of the member countries of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) should take a qualitative leap to establish an Islamic Free Trade Area (FTA) to overcome obstacles and bottlenecks that hinder the development of trade and investment between member states.
After NAFTA - CAFTA and AFTA
Instead of heeding the wave of social opposition, the United States has dug into its trenches, and in economic policy those trenches are the bilateral trade agreements.
TWN seminar warns about WTO-plus issues and rules in bilateral and regional FTAs
The Third World Network held a regional Asian workshop on bilateral and regional FTAs on 26-29 August in Kuala Lumpur. Many speakers and participants voiced concerns about how the developed countries are making use of such FTAs to get developing countries to accept issues.
Bilateral/regional free trade agreements: An outline of elements, nature and development implications
Several Asian countries and Asean as a bloc are now pursuing trade and economic frameworks and agreements with non-Asean countries.

    Links


  • #A18DoA - Global day of action to defeat free trade and investment treaties
    Website for the global day of action to defeat free trade and investment treaties #A18DoA
  • 21st Century Trade Agreements: Implications for Long-Run Development Policy
    A publication of the Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future. The paper examines the policy space available under various free trade regimes for countries pursuing industrial policies for development.
  • Alianza Social Continental
    La Alianza Social Continental es un foro de organizaciones y movimientos sociales progresistas de las Américas, creado para intercambiar información, definir estrategias y promover acciones conjuntas, todo ello encaminado a la búsqueda de un modelo de desarrollo alternativo y democrático, que beneficie a nuestros pueblos
  • ICC
    International Chamber of Commerce
  • Movimientos.org
    A multilingual (English, Spanish, Portuguese) website focusing on social movements and their campaigns, including those against bilateral and regional FTAs.
  • Pambazuka
    In this week’s edition of the Emerging Powers News Round-Up, read a comprehensive list of news stories and opinion pieces related to China, India and other emerging powers...
  • People over profit
    People Over Profit is a campaign network that unites peoples movements and NGOs across the globe to stop free trade agreements (FTAs) and corporate plunder, launched in October 2016.
  • Peoples Global Action
    In February 1998, movements from all continents met in Geneva to launch a worldwide coordination of resistances to the global market, a new alliance of struggle and mutual support called Peoples’ Global Action against "Free" Trade and the World Trade Organisation (PGA).
  • Regional/Multilateral Integration Agreements
    Selected research papers on regional trade agreements, from internationaleconomics.net
  • SOMO
    SOMO links the negotiations and rules on international trade and investment with the actual conduct of corporations within these rules and agreements.
  • South Centre
    An intergovernmental organisation of developing countries
  • Stop fast track!
    10 days to stop fast track in the United States: Jan 22 - 31 2014
  • Third World Network
    TWN’s website is a good source of information and analysis about what’s happening within the multilateral trade system (WTO, UNCTAD, G77, etc).
  • WorldTradeLaw.net
    WorldTradeLaw.net offers a free library of current trade news and resources; a database of dispute settlement tables and statistics; and a user-friendly search tool for legal texts, and other documents.