Uribe and Garcia break negotiations between the EU and the CAN

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Red Colombiana de Acción Frente al Libre Comercio, Recalca
(Colombia Action Network against Free Trade, Recalca)

Web: www.recalca.org.co
Email: recalca@etb.net.co

Bogotá, 16 September 2008

Uribe and Garcia break negotiations between the EU and the CAN

In perfect coordination, worthy of the political affinity between Alvaro Uribe and Alan García, the two presidents sent identical letters on 9 September 2008 to the President of the European Commission, in which, unilaterally and without consulting their partners in the Andean Community of Nations (CAN), they terminated the Association Agreement negotiations between the CAN and the EU. What they seek is quite serious: to force bilateral negotiations with the European Union, excluding both Bolivia and Ecuador.

Both leaders are clear in their letters about wanting to negotiate separately, pointing out that this strategy was "successfully tested" during the FTA negotiations with the United States. Already quite damaged by the US FTA process, negotiations with the European Union will finish by destroying Andean integration and making irreversible the neoliberal model imposed by these powers and their multinational corporations.

Ever since the start of the negotiations, the Colombian government has lied to the country, and to the world, saying that the aim of this partnership agreement was to strengthen the integration of the CAN. Both the arrogance of the EU and the submissiveness of Uribe towards foreign multinationals with his policy of "investor confidence" speak for themselves.

Uribe and Garcia do not care whether important markets such as Venezuela, Ecuador and Peru — to which their countries export value-added goods — are sacrificed, as long as they continue attracting investments to exploit natural resources, produce raw materials and provide cheap manual labour, as in colonial times.

While the governments of Colombia and Peru rush to hand over their countries’ national interests on a platter, the peoples of Bolivia and Ecuador are moving on with their sovereign and democratic aspirations.

Amidst the crisis and the daily questioning that the Uribe government is subjected to, the popular movement is generating more protests. The mobilisation of the Colombian people is the only way to prevent an FTA with the European Union, clearly worse than the one with the US, from being imposed on the nation.

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