Dumping: the Beginning of the End? Implications of the Ruling in the Brazil/US Cotton Dispute. Despite their WTO commitments to reduce trade-distorting subsidies, the European Union and the United States have used loopholes and creative accounting to continue dumping products on world markets. In the case of US cotton subsidies, the dispute settlement body of the WTO concluded that such practices hurt developing countries and are in violation of WTO rules. This landmark case sends hope to millions of impoverished cotton farmers in West Africa. And it might be the beginning of the end for US and EU dumping.
By Oxfam USA, US.
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Undermining Access to Medicines: Comparison of Five US FTAs. The US government is using bilateral and regional free-trade agreements (FTAs) to impose unnecessarily stringent intellectual property standards on developing countries that go beyond World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules. These new higher standards favor the short-term commercial interests of US pharmaceutical companies, at the expense of public health in developing countries. Oxfam has analyzed a selection of key US FTAs: The provisions in these agreements go far beyond the obligations required by the WTO Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). The new "TRIPS-plus" obligations in the FTAs close off the public health safeguards available to WTO members under TRIPs and will restrict access to affordable medicines in developing countries.
By Oxfam USA, US.
The Central America Free Trade Agreement: Three Reasons for Congress to Vote No. Congress needs to understand the implications of trade agreements for our trading partners in the developing world. The Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) is the first such agreement the United States has negotiated with less-developed countries, including some of the poorest in the hemisphere. These countries depend heavily on agriculture for the livelihood of significant portions of their populations, are ravaged by curable diseases due to poverty and inadequate health-care coverage, are sorely lacking in public infrastructure and in several cases are highly indebted. Yet CAFTA does not take as a starting point the disparities in development and resources between the US and the region; instead, it is modeled on the US bilateral free trade agreements with Chile and Singapore and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Based on our knowledge of NAFTA and the US agreements with Chile and Singapore, as well as news reports, USTR briefings and information from our partners in the region, Oxfam believes the double standards and rigged rules of US trade policy set forth in CAFTA will be a setback for development and poverty reduction in Central America.
By Oxfam USA, US.
Investing in Destruction: Glamis Gold. demonstrates how investment rules can undermine environmental protections. A new claim under the investment rules in Chapter 11 of NAFTA has been initiated by Glamis Gold, a Canadian mining company that has demanded $50 million in compensation from the US because of California restrictions on open-pit gold mining. The initiation of the claim reinforces the threats to environmental laws from investment rules, and raises important new issues about risks to indigenous communities. By Oxfam USA and Friends of the Earth.
By Oxfam USA, Friends of the Earth, US.