Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Unfair trade talks doomed to fail

30 July, 2004
Unfair trade talks doomed to fail

The Green Party says it is inevitable that the World Trade Organisation (WTO) meeting in Geneva will break down again unless industrialised countries unconditionally end their export and domestic production subsidies.

"The latest Geneva manoeuvring show that the rich nations have learnt nothing from the mistakes of the past," Green Party Co-leader Rod Donald said today. "Back-room deals, closed-door negotiations and vested interest: the whole process would be dismissed as a very bad soap-opera plot, if it didn't impinge so heavily on the livelihoods of so many people.

"The WTO claims to be a 'rules-based organisation' that champions the principles of 'transparency, non-discrimination and procedural fairness' yet its lack of internal transparency, participation and democracy is appalling.

"The latest episode has seen five mega-agricultural producers (United States, the European Union, India, Brazil and Australia) meeting in their bunker, while everyone else is locked-out of the discussion - and the deal.

"While Tim Groser, the New Zealander who is chairing the self-appointed group, is more diplomatic than previous chairs this doesn't disguise the fact that the group has come up with a rules framework that is still slanted in favour of big, subsidised exporters and against developing countries.

"This ad hoc process also means the excluded WTO members will have just 24 hours to scrutinise whatever framework the 'famous five' finally cobble-together. It gives little opportunity for governments to assess the implications and absolutely no time at all for their citizens to debate the impact on their lives of the new rules.

"Why should developing countries risk their food security and the destruction of local industries by throwing open their domestic economies?" Mr Donald asked.

"Most industrialised countries built their economies on colonial exploitation and domestic protection. It is outrageous that those countries are now demanding that many of their former colonies sacrifice their domestic protection."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news