bilaterals.org was initiated in September 2004 by the Asia-Pacific Research Network, GATT Watchdog, Global Justice Ecology Project, GRAIN, IBON Foundation and XminusY. What brought these groups together was a shared concern about the growth of bilateral trade and investment deals outside of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and a feeling that these less visible agreements were "under the radar" of many social justice activists. The bilaterals.org website was thus conceived as a kind of collaborative clearinghouse on the internet where people could find and post their own information and analysis about bilateral free trade agreements (FTAs) and investment treaties being negotiated and signed across the globe, and who is doing what about them. The site’s goal is really to support social movements resisting the imposition of these deals, in a way that builds bridges between isolated efforts and shows the bigger, often global, dynamics at play.
Today, a small and independent group of people informally collaborate to ensure the maintenance, development and administration of the site, and its engagement in social media, on a day to day basis. They themselves work with different organisations and initiatives in different parts of the world, including Acción por la Biodiversidad, Global Justice Ecology Project, GRAIN and Indonesia Global Justice. Others help out occasionally with translations, compiling materials for the site, writing introductions to different sections, etc. Most of this work is done on a volunteer or solidarity basis.
All organisations, networks or individuals active on these issues or wanting to get more involved are very welcome to participate. There are a number of ways that you can join us and use this site.
If you want to be active with bilaterals.org you can
– contribute materials on a regular or ad hoc basis
– translate articles or site texts or tweets
– put materials out on the bilaterals.org social media feeds
– manage your own page or blog within the site
Please see the How to participate page for details on all of these.
If you just want to use the services, please note that you can
– subscribe to the "bilaterals.org weekly" mailing list
– subscribe to or syndicate the site’s RSS feeds
– follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/@bilaterals_org
– find us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/bilaterals.org
This website is currently (2022) funded by: Both Ends, German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development / Rosa Luxemburg Siftung, Karibu Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Foundation, Un Monde par Tous