Trade and Investment
Across the Mekong region, ‘development’ has become synonymous with rapid economic growth, to be achieved through predominantly large-scale, private investments. The development model promoted by the region’s governments prioritizes trade and investment liberalization, and privatization. Private investment is sought in virtually every sector of the economy from energy, oil, minerals, agriculture and food processing to education, health, tourism, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, transportation and urban infrastructure.
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.
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.
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.
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.
TRADE JUSTICE PILIPINAS
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MAKATI CITY, Philippines – On Valentine’s Day, around 100 members of the ASEAN Civil Society Conference/ASEAN Peoples’ Forum 2017-Philippines National Organizing Committee (NOC) wearing red shirts marched to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to deliver the Philippine CSOs’ position and demands on the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC).