Sale of the Century?

November 9, 2001

Sale of the Century?
Friends of the Earth International presents Sustainable Trade Agenda at the Doha Ministerial

Doha: On the eve of the launch of the WTO Ministerial Conference in Qatar, Friends of the Earth International (FoEI) a worldwide federation of 68 independent national environmental groups, uniting close to 1 million activists worldwide has presented its sustainable trade agenda in Doha.

Friends of the Earth representatives from the Philippines, Switzerland, Belgium, Germany, Norway and the UK have arrived to press for a more sustainable and equitable trading system. At the same time FOE groups around the world are involved in decentralised actions under the slogan ?Our world is not for sale┬╣.

FOEI is calling on governments to:

  • Refrain from embarking on another round of comprehensive trade negotiations
  • Undertake a comprehensive series of assessments on the impact of the implementation of all the Uruguay Round agreements.
  • Halt on-going agriculture trade liberalisation negotiations within the Agreement on Agriculture and start talks for the negotiation in the upcoming UN World Summit for Sustainable Development (WSSD) in 2002 for a new a multilateral treaty for food and agriculture to bring about food security, safety, and sustainability.
  • Stop current negotiations on further services liberalisation and ensure that any services related to the extraction or collection of energy fuels, minerals and ore, water, timber, and other natural resources, and any services related to nuclear energy are exclude from any GATS disciplines.
  • Ensure that the TRIPS Agreement does not restrict the right of governments and peoples to promote and protect essential public interests to health, the environment, and development.
  • Prohibit the patenting (and the use of other intellectual property rights) of life forms.
  • Acknowledge that multilateral treaties on the environment, development, health, labour and human rights take precedence over the WTO.
  • Cancel debt for all developing countries, comprehensively and unconditionally in recognition of the ecological debt countries of the North owe to the South.
  • Ensure that the global trading system is democratic, open, transparent and participatory.

To see the full position FOEI paper ?Sale of the Century: Towards a Sustainable Trading System┬╣ and more up to date information see www.archive.foe.org.au or www.foei.org

For further information contact:

FOEI delegation in Doha

Tony Juniper
Ph: +44-7712 843 207

Alexandra Wandel
Ph: +49-172-748 39 53

Vice Yu
Ph: +41-79 2375 626

FoE Australia Media Contacts

Damian Sullivan
Mob: 0421 874 838

Cam Walker
Mob: 0419 338 047