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Screengrab of webinar

Civil society organizations from Indonesia, Philippines, and Europe criticized the European Union’s Multilateral Investment Court proposal as an attempt to multilateralise the investor-State dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism and establish a global corporate court system[1].

EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom made a strong pitch for a global investment court at the  meeting between the EU and ASEAN Economic Ministers held in Manila last week.

Date Posted: Friday, 2017 Mar 24th

The European Commission proposal for a multilateral mechanism to settle investor-state disputes (ISDS) – publicly branded as a Multilateral Investment Court – would take us down that second path. It threatens to forever lock-in the highly controversial ISDS system that only benefits corporations.

This proposal is part of the negotiations that the EU is holding with Indonesia, Philippines and Myanmar. Furthermore, the EU has presented it to as many as 40 non-EU governments during the World Economic Forum at Davos and also in a meeting last December in Geneva.

Date Posted: Wednesday, 2017 Mar 22nd

Forest destruction and encroachment on public land are issues that have figured highly on the agenda of the current military government. Since 2014, the introduction and implementation of controversial legislations, cabinet resolutions and policies, including NCPO Orders no. 64/2014 and 66/2014, have restricted access and use of land and forestry land by marginalized and landless peasants, indigenous peoples, and villagers, despite previous recognitions by the Constitution of their rights and a long period of settlement on the land.

Date Posted: Tuesday, 2017 Mar 21st
Rubber plantation in Southern Lao PDR

On 21 March, the International Day of Forests, 200 organisations are reminding the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) that its misleading forest definition dating back to 1948 must be changed. The definition has allowed the plantations industry to hide the devastating ecological and social impacts of large-scale monoculture tree plantations behind a positive forest image.

Date Posted: Tuesday, 2017 Mar 21st

FTAs aren’t just about ‘trade’. They’re comprehensive agreements to lock in free market capitalism, strengthen the power of global corporations, finance, and powerful governments, and advance their geopolitical objectives. 

There are direct links between FTAs, climate change, ecological devastation, and violations of Indigenous Peoples’, workers’ and farmers’ rights. 

Date Posted: Thursday, 2017 Mar 16th

On 14 March 2017, the International Day of Action for Rivers, we, the Save the Mekong Coalition along with civil society and community partners from Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, make this statement to express our gratitude to the Mekong River and the way of life she supports. The Mekong is our mother river, home to unique biodiversity and a lifeline for millions of people throughout the river basin. We recognize the efforts of Mekong communities who are working to protect and preserve the unique ecosystems and resources of the river for future generations. 

Date Posted: Tuesday, 2017 Mar 14th

Manila -- For Philippine women’s organizations, the 2017 commemoration of International Women’s Day was a critical action by and on behalf of Filipino women. As the March 8 statement signed by more than 30 organizations, including Focus on the Global South, said, “Filipino women from across all sectors have fought long and tough struggles—and have won many.

Date Posted: Thursday, 2017 Mar 09th

This morning, around 80 community members came together to participate in an event in Cambodia to commemorate International Women’s Day.

Of the participants, around 30 were local schoolchildren, with members of social movements and civil society organisations also participating, including two from Messenger Band, one from Social Action for Change and one from Focus on the Global South.

Date Posted: Wednesday, 2017 Mar 08th

Photo caption: Trade activists protesting the 17th round of negotiations for the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (RCEP) in Kobe, Japan. 27 February 2017. Photo by Shoko Uchida.

1 March 2017

Trade Justice Pilipinas a broad platform campaigning for just trade and investment policies expresses its opposition to and calls on the public to resist international economic agreements like Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (RCEP) and other new generation FTAs that advance corporate agenda over peoples rights and welfare.

Date Posted: Wednesday, 2017 Mar 01st

22 February 2017, Manila, Philippines - Civil society and grassroots organizations from across Asia gathered in Manila for a two-day strategy meeting, February 21 and 22, to discuss a global campaign against inequality. Calling themselves the Fight Inequality Alliance, the group believes that a global movement is what it’s going to take to address and fight inequality, which has reached extreme proportions in this century, and has created devastating impacts on communities and countries, and on the climate.

Date Posted: Wednesday, 2017 Feb 22nd
Screengrab of webinar

Civil society organizations from Indonesia, Philippines, and Europe criticized the European Union’s Multilateral Investment Court proposal as an attempt to multilateralise the investor-State disput

Rubber plantation in Southern Lao PDR

On 21 March, the International Day of Forests, 200 organisations are

22 February 2017, Manila, Philippines - Civil society and grassroots organizations from across Asia gathered in Manila for a two-day strategy meeting, February 21 and 22, to discuss a global campai

Jakarta, December 8th: The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is being negotiated in Jakarta, Indonesia this week (December 2-10)[i].

 

Press Conference

Organised by: The Sombath Initiative

11am, Wednesday 31 August, 2016, Bangkok

 

More than 80 participants representing trade unions, farming communities, indigenous peoples, health networks, women’s organisations, academia and civil society organizations met on 27-28 July in K

Amsterdam/Manila, May 24 2016 – As the first round of negotiations of a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the Philippines and the EU commences in Brussels, a new report warns that it endangers eff

Land report

The Asia Land Meeting was an initiative born from interest expressed during two meetings: o­ne, an international meeting in Washington DC in April 2002, of a group of academics and activists working with or representing people’s organisations from throughout Asia, each involved in the struggle for land rights in their respective countries.
By Walden Bello, co-authored by Mary Lou Malig, Herbert Docena and Marissa de Guzman

 

The book the Anti-Development State: the political economy of permanent crisis in the Philippines was just released in Manila.

 

The book by Dr. Walden Bello and co authored by, Mary Lou Malig, Herbert Docena and Marissa de Guzman provides a convincing, if painful, explanation why the Philippines is mired in poverty at the beginning of the 21st century, and proposes a route out of the quagmire.

 

In October, 2003, Focus o­n the Global South, a regional program for policy research, analysis and action, in collaboration with the Poverty and Development Division of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP), brought together representatives of 20 non-government and people’s organizations from 13 countries to discuss Goal 1 of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs): Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger. The main purpose of this Asia-Pacific Civil Society Forum was to propose recommendations to the Committee o­n Poverty Reduction of the UNESCAP as to how countries of the regions could better achieve the goal.

WTOBy Fatoumata Jawara and Aileen Kwa

Zed Books, London. This immensely important book o­n the politics of the WTO, which takes the lid off how the WTO really works, and what really happened before, at, and after the Fourth WTO Ministerial Conference in Doha in 2001, o­n the basis of interviews with 33 Geneva-based delegates to the WTO and 10 Secretariat staff members.

By Aileen Kwa
The World Trade Organization (WTO) has often been portrayed as the pinnacle of the multilateral system of global economic governance.
Why it has achieved this reputation is puzzling since it is one of the most undemocratic organizations around. Formally speaking, the WTO is a one-country, one-vote system. Yet actual decision-making is done by a process called “consensus,” in which the big trading powers impose a consensus arrived at among  themselves on the rest of the body. In the WTO, formal parliamentary sessions where decisions are made in democratic institutions are reserved for speechmaking.
Real decisions are made in backrooms by informal caucuses whose members are not determined by formal rules and votes but by informal agreement among significant players.
By Hemant Morparia and Anant Kulkarni

Publisher: YUVA and Focus o­n the Global South-India Programme

This publication wasproduced by YUVA and the Focus_India Programme in the light of the communal carnage that racked the Indian State of Gujarat in 2002.

The damage to life and property in the three month long carnage was considerable, but pales into insignificance when compared to the deper and long lasting socio-cultural wounds that it left behind.

The book is a compilation of politically hard hitting cartoons and those with a message of hope in the darkness of communal animosity and religious hatred.

To order please write to focusind@vsnl.net

Too hot to handle: The Samut Prakan Wastewater Management Project Inspection Process

Khlong Dan Community Writes to the ADB President
Controversial Report Poisons Board-Management Relations at ADB
By : Walden Bello
Evading Responsibility: The Asian Development Bank and the Inspection Function
By : Shalmali Guttal
Call for Goverment to Review Mega-Projects Tainted by Graft
By : Onnucha Hutasingh and Sunthorn Pongpao
Dirty Business in Samut Prakan
By : Chang Noi
Inspection Report on Samut Prakarn Shakes Asian Development Bank
By : Walden Bello
Summary of the Final Report of the Inspection Panel on Samut Prakarn Wastewater  Management Project
Summary of the Report and Recommendation of the Inspection Committee to The Board of Directors of the ADB on Inspection Request
Interventions by Directors representing various Countries at the ADB Board meeting held on 25th of March 2002

Click here to download >>>>  

Good Governance or Bad management:An overview of ADB's Decision making Processes and Policies

A collection articles that pry open the ADB's claim to good governance and demand a fresh look at the decision making processes within the ADB. 

Pages

The European Commission proposal for a multilateral mechanism to settle investor-state disputes (ISDS) – publicly branded as a Multilateral Investment Court – would take us down that second path.

Forest destruction and encroachment on public land are issues that have figured highly on the agenda of the current military government. Since 2014, the introduction and implementation of controversial legislations, cabinet resolutions and policies, including NCPO Orders no.

Photo caption: Trade activists protesting the 17th round of negotiations for the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (RCEP) in Kobe, Japan. 27 February 2017. Photo by Shoko Uchida.

1 March 2017

TRADE JUSTICE PILIPINAS

c/o Focus on the Global South. 19 Maginhawa Street, UP Village, Diliman, Quezon City. +6323552578

            We the “People Go Network Forum” comprised of villagers, community based organizations, peasants, academia, nongovernmental organizations, labors, media, students, the self-employed from 109 organizations are here to review the situations in Thailand in the aftermath of the coup, espe

On 14 March 2017, the International Day of Action for Rivers, we, the Save the Mekong Coalition along with civil society and community partners from Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, make this statement to express our gratitude to the Mekong River and the way of life she supports. The Mekong is our mother river, home to unique biodiversity and a lifeline for millions of people throughout the river basin. We recognize the efforts of Mekong communities who are working to protect and preserve the unique ecosystems and resources of the river for future generations. 

 

Joint Organizations

July 11, 2016 - We, the undersigned Cambodian civil society groups, are outraged at the brutal murder of independent political analyst and grassroots organiser Kem Ley yesterday morning, and call for a prompt, thorough and independent inquiry into his death.

Kem Ley, 46, was shot twice, in his chest and his head, in a heavily-frequented Caltex petrol station cafe in central Phnom Penh shortly before 9.00 on Sunday morning.

Secretariat: c/o NFBM #1066-B, Emerald St., Taglesville Subd., Balanga City, Bataan

5th July 2016

Dear Friends,

5th July 2016

Translated from Filipino

Kilusan para sa Pambansang Demokrasya (KILUSAN) strongly condemns the treacherous murder of our comrade Gloria Capitan of Mariveles, Bataan!

Labor Day statement of Independent Senatorial Candidate Walden Bello

 Today, I march side by side with our workers to affirm their struggle for labor rights and continue the fight for dignity for our working class.

Labor day is a celebration of what the labor movement has won over decades of struggle.

Not many people know this but the fact that it is illegal to force workers to work for more than 8 hours and that they have to be paid more if they work beyond that is something that workers—through collective action—achieved.

You may sign this statement by clicking here

Suffering the brunt of the ongoing El Nino, more than 6 thousand farmers converged along a national highway in Kidapawan in the island of Mindanao in the Philippines on March 30 to demand 15,000 sacks of rice and financial subsidy promised to them six months earlier by the provincial government. They urgently need this assistance to tide them over until they are able to plant and harvest rice again.