A dossier on the WTO' s fai l ed 5th Mi ni steri al Conference

Cancun We Won
In 1985, In 1985, EQUATIONS was founded in response to on urge to understand the
impacts of development porticularly in the context of liberolised trade regimes, the opening up of
the notional economy, the beginning of economic reforms and concomitant structural adjustment
Campaigning and advocacy on tourism and development issues in Indio, in recent years our
work has focused on women and tourism, the child and tourism, ecosystems, communities and
tourism and globalisation
We envision tourism that is non-exploitative, where decision-making is democratised and
access to and benefits of tourism are equitably distributed. We endorse justice, equity, people
centred and movement centred activism, democratisation and dialogue as our core values.
EQUATIONS, Zo/ZÓ, 8'hCross, Vignan Nagor, New Tippasandra, 8angalore- ÓóÛÛ/Ó, Indio
All comments can forwarded to inlo(equi!obìeIourisn.c(g
EQUATIONS thanks Shalmali Guttal for helpful comments and Anupo Jayokrishnon for the
design. This dossier wos compiled by Benny Kuruvillo, Sonthosh George
ond Sumesh Mongoloserry.
1 . 0 Context
1.1 What is the WTOI Why should we care? - Associated Press
1.2 Singapore issues and Indian concerns - The Economic Times
1 .3 Time for transformation - George Monbiot
2. 0 Prel ude To Cancun
2.1 Why a derailed WTO ministerial i s the best outcome for the south -Walden Bello
2.2 Press release - Indian people's campaign against the WTO
2.3 International civil societ submission on the GATS
2.4 Press release Stop the GATS attack (EQUATI ONS and Focus on the Global
South - I ndia Progrmme)
3. 0 News From The Conference
3.1 Press release: WTO and Democracy World Development Movement
3.2 Press release by civil society groups: Why Are We Protesting Today?
3.3 Mock memo on the 13 September draft ministerial text
3.4 Press release: African Parliamentarians denounce WTO manipulation
3.5 Press release: Reject the ministerial text - Indian People's Campaign against WTO
4.0 Agri cul ture
4.1 Biggest US growers pocket 71 % farm sops - Reuters
4.2 Mr. Lee Kyung Hoe
4.3 Indian farmer demonstrate against WTO
5. 0 Offi ci al Documents
5.1 Leter to Pierre Pettigrew from Arun Jaitely and Rafidah Aiz
5.2 India's statement at the Heads of Delegation meeting
5.3 The Cancun Ministerial Statement 14 September 2003
6. 0 Post Col l apse
6.1 Via Campesina: We won in Cancun! The WTO was derailed
6.2 Indian people's campaign against WTO
6.3 Statement from the group of Caribbean countries
6.4 Africans in the forefront in Cancun
6.5 Cancun Conclave: A new sunrise for developing countries - Benny Kuruvilla 62
6.6 Crisis of the WTO System: Chance for the Underprivileged and Marginalised IGTN 66
6.7 Cancun failure: Africa showed the way -Devinder Sharma
6.8 A turning point world trade -John Cavanagh
6.9 The meaning of Cancun - S.PShukla
The World Trade Organi sati on (WTO) the successor to the General
Agreement on Trade and Tariffs (GATT) came i nto existence i n January
1 995 after the Uruguay round of the GATT. Si nce its establ i shmentl
permanent negoti ati ons have been carried with a series of Mi ni steri al
meeti ngs stari ng wi th Si ngapore ( 1 996L Geneva ( 1 998) 1 Seattle
( 1 999) and Doha ( 2001 ) setti ng the broad agenda for the process at
its Geneva headquarters. Thi s powerful gl obal trade body sets up
l egal l y enforceabl e commerci al rul es f or i nternati onal trade i n Goods,
Agri cul ture, I ntel l ectual property and Servi ces l i ke heal thl water and
educati on .
The Fi fh Mi ni steri al of WTO hel d i n the Mexican tourist resort of
Cancun was the second Mi ni steri al Meet i ng to dramatical l y col l apse
once agai n bri ngi ng i nto rel ief its deep i nsti tuti onal cri si s. The
documents i n thi s dossi er are meant to g ive an i nsi ght i nto the actual
negoti ati ons by produci ng key statements by ci vi l society groups and
Trade mi nisters from devel opi ng countri es.
I n an i nstructive overview, Wal den Bel l o predi cts the col l apse of the
i mpendi ng Cancun mi ni steri al , and questi ons the key tenet that Itrade
l i beral i sati on promoted prosperity'l by ci ti ng a Worl d Bank study from
the l ate 1 990s by M. Lundberg and L. Squi re. The study noted that the
"poor are far more vul nerable to shi fts i n relative i nternati onal pri ces
and thi s vul nerabi l ity i s magnifi ed by the countryls openness to trade.
At l east i n the shor term
gl obal i sati on appears to i ncrease both
povery and i nequal ity'l. Swi mmi ng agai nst the general current of ci vi l
soci ety anal yses on the WTO, George Monbi ot argues that the
i nsti tuti onal i zed subversi on of the WTO' s procedures by the North and
its corporate fel l ow travelers shoul d be countered not by an
"overthrow" of the WTO but by usi ng the forum to "overthrow the
power of the rich", and by instituti onal i zi ng meani ngful safeguards that
a l l ow onl y the "nice guys to survive" i n worl d trade.
Against thi s backdrop, the I ndi an Peopl e's Campaign Agai nst the
WTO ( I PCAWTO) pre-Ca ncun statement on WTO and GATS
h i ghl i ghts the key i ssues i nvol ved
• The WTO perspectives on agri culture are "total l y detrimental to the
interests of the vast maj ority of our peopl e consi st i ng of smal l and
marg i nal peasants, the agri cul tural workers . . .
• The need to resist the commodificati on of education, heal th, water.
• The need to urgently engage the developed countries on the
"dangerous i mpl i cati ons of the TRI PS agreement with respect to
. bi o-diversity, pi racy of tradi ti onal knowledge and growing monopol y of
mul ti nati onal ( agro-chemi cal corporati ons) on seeds
• As contrasted to the I ndi an Commerce's Mi nistry's position that the
exist i ng l evel of I ndi an tari ffs provided adequate "comfor" and
needed to be mai ntai ned, the I PCAWTO i nsi sted on the "ri ght to use
quantitative restrictions" since EU/US agricu ltural subsidi es not onl y
were substanti al but were growi ng
I l l ustrati ng the skewed nature of the process despite the rhetoric
a bout the "democratic" nature of the WTO, ci vi l society groups noted
that the "two richest del egati ons the EU and the US (representing 1 0%
of the worl d) wi th a combi ned strength of 863 was three times the total
of 235 for the 4 bi ggest Southern countries (51 %) .
Southern countries were resi stant to the decl ared i ntention of
developed countries to make Cancun the site for negoti ati ons on the
so-cal led "Singapore" i ssues. These concerns of devel opi ng countries
were a rticul ated i n a note co-authored by the Mal aysi an and I ndi an
Commerce Ministers, which pOi nted out the compl exity of these i ssues,
the resource constrai nts, and the need for substanti al analysi s before
any commitments coul d be made. More over, seri ous doubts were
raised about the l ack of di scussi on on the Doha development agenda,
the negotiati on procedures and the i ncl usi on of the Si ngapore i ssues
wi thout pri or discussi ons. Southern del egati ons rejected the meeting's
final text, effecti vel y derai l i ng the mi nisteri al .
The cruci al rol e of ci vi l society groups, for providi ng critical i nputs
through l obbyi ng, i nformi ng and mobi l izi ng, was publ icl y recogni zed
by Brazi l 's forei gn mi ni ster and other Southern del egates. Vi a
Campesi na, a gl obal coal iti on of farmer's movements disagreed with
the G- 22's proposal s about agri cultural l i beral izati on and i ncreasi ng
market access, whi ch serve to i ntensi fy the excl usi on a nd poverty for
mi l l ions in the South. Vi a Campesi na specifical l y criticised di rect
payments a nd i ncome suppor for agro- i ndustr in the Norh that
faci l itate dumpi ng of agri cul tural commodities on the i nternati onal
market and cal l ed for measures to protect Southern agri cul ture from
l ow-priced i mports.
Cancun's progressive result hi ghl i ghted the cruci al rol e of
campai gni ng. Thanks to i ntense lobbyi ng by ci vi l society groups both
i n the norh a nd the south developi ng countries took si mi l ar posi ti ons
on several i ssues. Cancun i s a l andmark and hol ds val uabl e lessons
for ci vi l soci ety groups. We hope thi s dossi er captures the i mportance
of i ncorporati ng trade i ssues onto the agenda of groups worki ng on
themes that may seem removed from t he WTO
November 2003.
1.0 Context
1 . 1 What I s The WO, Why Should We Care?
By The Associ ated Press
CANCUN, Mexico (AP) The 1 46 governments that bel ong to the
Worl d Trade Organi sati on wi l l hol d a five-day meeti ng starting
Wednesday in Cancun to thrash out many probl ems surrou ndi ng the
l atest "round" of trade l i beral i zati on tal ks.
Here, i n questi on-and- answer form, i s a l ook at t he WTO and how
i t affects busi nesses and i ndi vi dual s worl dwi de.
Q: When and how di d the WTO come i nta bei ng?
A: The WTO was created as part of the treaty on the Uruguay Rou nd
of trade l i beral i zati on negoti ati ons. The organi zati on came i nto
existence on J an. 1 , 1 995, to repl ace the General Agreement on
Tariffs and Trade. I t empl oys 550 people at its headquarers, on the
shores of Lake Geneva. Unl i ke i ts predecessor, the WTO has l egal
force and its agreements and rul es are bi ndi ng on al l its members.
Q: What does i t do?
A: I t sets out the l egal rul es surroundi ng i nternati onal commerce,
through a seri es of treati es and agreements negoti ated by its
members. These treaties are bui l t upon the pri nci pl e that trade shoul d
be as uni nhi bited as possi ble and that a countr shoul d treat al l its
tradi ng partners equal l y and avoi d di scri mi nati ng between domesti c
and forei gn products, servi ces or peopl e. To ensure t hi s, the WTO has
a l egal system for settl i ng di sputes between members and a
survei l l ance mechani sm to l ook at trade pol i ci es i n each country. I t
al so i s responsi bl e for the occasi onal "rounds" of negoti ati ons that
l ead to t reati es to open up trade. The current round was l aunched i n
November 2001 and i s supposed to fi ni sh by the end of next year,
though the l ast round overran by several years.
Q: The phrase "free trade" i s wi del y used and often cri ti ci zed. What
does i t actual l y mean?
A: I n economi cs, i t i s t he pri nci pl e that the g l obal economy benefits
i f trade is di ctated onl y by market forces. Countri es speci al ize in the
products that they can produce most cheapl y and i mport those that
can be produced mare effi ci entl y el sewhere.
Barri ers to free trade, l i ke i mport tariffs, quotas, government
subsi di es and compl i cated customs procedu res adversel y affect
economi c g rowth. A recent study by the Uni versity of Mi chi gan found
that cutti ng g l obal trade barri ers by a t hi rd woul d boost t he worl d
economy by $61 3 bi l l i on -the equi val ent of addi ng a country the
si ze of Canada to the worl d.
Q: That sounds good. Why not i ust do i t?
A: Because free trade creates l osers as wel l as wi nners and can wi den
the gaps between ri ch and poor.
"For some parts of the 'worl d, trade has been proved to have very
positive effects i n the reducti on of i ncome i nequal ity, but i n other
areas, l i ke Lati n Ameri ca, we have seen iust the opposi te," sai d WTO
Di rector- General Supachai Panitchpakdi .

Many i ndustries onl y survive i n certai n countries because of
subsi di es or because forei gn products are kept out. Governments
can't aHord pol i ti cal ly to agree to a move that coul d destroy one of
thei r i ndustries, l i ke steel i n the United States or sugar i n the European
Uni on. I n additi on, free trade may confl i ct wi th governments' soci al or
envi ronmental pol i ci es.
For thi s reason, the WTO recogni zes that countries wi l l need t i me
to adapt and restructure as barri ers fal l , so cuts are made gradual ly
and wi th the agreement of al l members. Because deci si ons made at
the WTO can have a massi ve eHect on i ndi vidual countries, al l
deci si ons are taken by consensus.
Q: Why are so many groups and i ndivi dual s opposed to the WTO?
A: Many WTO opponents see the organi zati on as putti ng the i nterests
of busi ness -especi al ly bi g multi nati onal s - above those of workers,
the envi ronment and poor nati ons. Some groups, especi al l y in the
United States, are concerned that the bi ndi ng rul es of the WTC) take
away a country' s nati onal sovereignty.
Even those who accept the pri nci pl e of the WTO are concerned
that the current system means that power l i es wi th the bi g traders,
especi al ly the United States and the European Uni on, who can easi l y
put pressure on smal l er nati ons to go al ong wi th thi ngs that may not
be i n thei r i nterest. They al so see the WTO -whi ch always meets i n
pri vate - as l acki ng transparency.
Smal l and poor countri es al so compl ai n that they cannot keep u p
wi th the goi ngs-on of the organi sati on, even though i t i s vi tal l y
i mportant t o them. Meeti ngs have prol iferated i n recent years, and
someti mes several take pl ace si mul taneousl y. More than 30 WTO
members cannot aHord to mai ntai n any staH at al l i n Geneva and
many others have only one or two offi ci al s t o cover al l t he i ssues.
1 . 2 Singapore I ssues And I ndian Concerns
Economi c Ti mes 1 5 September 2003, Bongal ore
What are the 'Si ngapore i ssues'?
The term refers to areas of trade and i nvestment; trade and
competi ti on pol i cy; trade faci l i tati on; and transparency i n government
procu rement, i n rel ati on to the Worl d Trade Organi zati on (WTO) .
These fou r i ssues have col l ecti vel y come to be known as t he Si ngapore
i ssues i n the context of the WTO because it was at the fi rst mi ni steri al
conference of t he WTO i n Si ngapore i n 1 996 that they were fi rst
brought u p as possi bl e areas on whi ch the mul ti l ateral body coul d
i ni ti ate negoti ati ons.
What i s the rati onal e behi nd di scussi ng these i ssues as part of tradi ng
negoti ati ons?
Many nati ons that are members of the WTO fel t that for
i nternati onal trade to be genui nel y free and fai r. These i ssues woul d
need to be i ncorporated. They poi nted out, for i nstance, that of the
total g l obal trade i n good and services of $6. 1 tri l l i on i n 1 995, as
much as one-thi rd was t rade wi thi n compani es - between subsi di ari es
of the same MNC or between a subsi di ary and i ts headquarters.
Cl earl y, therefore, there is a consi derabl e l i nk between trade and
i nvestment. Yet, as thi ngs stand, whi l e there are as many as 2, 1 00
( UNCTAD esti mate) bi l ateral i nvestment treaties, there is no uni l ateral
agreement on how to deal wi th forei gn di rect i nvestment.
Si mi l arl y, competi ti on pol i cy woul d al so have an i mpact on the
vol ume of trade. One of the thi ngs a n i nternati onal agreement on
competiti on pol i cy woul d need to l ook at i s cartel s i n vari ous
i ndustri es, whi ch are esti mated to cost devel opi ng countri es bi l l ions of
dol l ars a year due to overpri ci ng. A for government procurement to
take j ust one exampl e of how it affects trade, if a government offers an
i ncenti ve for the l evel of i ndegeni sati on i n procuri ng a good that
cl earl y woul d affect trade.
Here agai n, there i s a 'pl uri l atertal ' agreement, i nvol vi ng 28
countri es, but t he attempt i s t o reach an agreement between al l 1 46
WTO member countri es. Trade faci l i tati on refers essenti al ly to
si mpl i fyi ng procedural hassl es i n i nternati onal trade, i n terms of the
documentati on requi red by customs departments and so on.
Obvi ousl y, t hi s too has an i mpact
on trade.
Where do vari ous countries stand on the Si ngapore i ssues?
There is by-and- I arge a divi de between the devel oped and the
devel opi ng countri es on whether these i ssues ought to be par of the
1 . 3 Opinion
WTO's negoti ati ng mandate at thi s poi nt or not, a nd al so on the
contours that such negoti ati ons shoul d take, i f at al l they are hel d. The
EU, Japa n and South Korea were the ones that fi rst pushed for the
Si ngapore i ssues i n 1 996 and to varyi ng degrees most of the
devel oped worl d has gone al ong wi th them. I ndi a and other
devel opi ng countri es, on the other hand, are cauti ous about taki ng up
these i ssues for negoti ati ons.
What i s I ndi a' s obiecti on to the Si ngapore i ssues?
On i ssues l i ke i nvestment and competi ti on pol i cy, I ndi a feel s that
havi ng a mul ti l ateral agreement woul d be a seri ous i mpi ngement on
t he soverei gn ri ghts of countri es. To an extent of course, t hi s i s i nherent
i n any multi l ateral treaty, but i nvestment i s seen as an area i n whi ch
cedi ng soverei gn ri g hts woul d l eave governments, parti cul arl y
devel opi ng country governments, wi th too l i ttl e room for manoeuvre i n
di recti ng i nvestments i nto areas of nati onal priority. These are concerns
that many other devel opi ng countries al so share. I n addi ti on on the
speci fi c i ssue of competiti on pol i cy as appl i cabl e to 'hardcore cartel s' ,
I ndi a has poi nted out that there i s no cl arity on whether these woul d
i ncl ude export cartel s. The Organi sati on of Petrol eum Exporti ng
Countries ( OPEC) i s perhaps t he best-known exampl e of a n export
cartel that ri gs prices by fi xi ng producti on cei l i ngs. On the i ssue of
tra nsparency i n government procurement, the I ndi an positi on i s that
whi l e the pri nci pl e i s enti rely acceptabl e, there cannot be a uni versal
determi nati on of what constitutes transparent procedures. On trade
faci l i tati on I ndi a has argued that once agai n whi l e the i dea
unexcepti onabl e, devel opi ng countri es may not have the resou rces- by
way of technol ogy or otheri se to bri ng thei r procedures i n l i ne wi th
those i n the devel oped worl d over the short-to medi um-term.
Time For Transformation
Feebl e and corrupted, t he WTO i s now i neffecti ve. I t needs
transformati on to al l ow the poor of the worl d to overthrow the power
of the ri ch.
George Monbiot, Monday September 8, 2003, The Guardi an
The World Trade Organi sati on i s a corrupted, co-opted, captured
i nsti tuti on, but al l those who care about gl obal iustice shoul d be
fi ghti ng for its survi val . Every ti me we shout that the WTO has got to
go, we j oi n hands wi th George Bush: he wants to destroy it because it
i mpedes hi s pl ans for di rect US control of other nati ons' economi es.
I n pri nci pl e, the poor members of the WTO can and shoul d outote
the ri ch ones. I n practi ce, its democratic structure has been bypassed
by the notori ous "green room" meeti ng� organi sed by the ri ch nati ons,
by corporate l obbyi ng and by the secret and unaccountabl e
commi ttees of the corporate l awyers i t uses to resol ve trade disputes.
Al l thi s must change, but i t i s now cl ear to me that to cal l for i ts
destruction i s l i ke cal l i ng for the dissol uti on of a corrupt parl i ament i n
favour of the monarchy: i t i s to choose uni l ateral ist over
mul ti l ateral i sm. Our key task i s not to overthrow the WTO, but to assi st
the poor nati ons to use it to overhrow the power of the ri ch.
I n theory, the rul es the WTO enforces are supposed to prevent
protecti oni sm by the ri ch nati ons whi l e permi tti ng a degree of
protecti oni sm by the poor ones. The pri nci pl es behi nd thi s are sou nd.
Most of the countries that are ri ch today devel oped wi th the hel p of
"i nfant i ndustry protecti on": defendi ng new i ndustries from forei gn
competi ti on u nti l they are bi g enough to compete on equal terms. The
pol icy makes sense. Establ i shed I ndustri es have capital , experi ence
and economi es of scal e on thei r si de; i nfant i ndustries i n poor nati ons
do not. Devel opi ng i n di rect competiti on wi th bi g busi ness overseas i s
l i ke l earni ng to swi m i n a torrent: you wi l l be swept away and drowned
l ong before you acqui re the necessary experti se. Ri ch countri es, by
contrast, have no need for protecti oni sm, but by defendi ng thei r
markets agai nst i mports from poor nati ons, they prevent the transfer of
weal th.
I n practi ce, because of the way i n whi ch the ri ch members of the
organi sati on have been abl e to subver its processes and bul ly the
poor ones, the WTO does precisel y the opposi te. The "speci al and
differenti al treatment" i t ofers t he poor nati ons i s both utterly feebl e
and routi nel y bl ocked by the I MF and the Worl d Bank, whi ch i nsi st that
thei r cl i ents drop al l thei r protecti ons i n order to be el i gi bl e for l oans.
The "technol ogy transfer" the WTO has l ong promi sed the poor has
never materi al i sed. The ri ch nati ons, by contrast, are permitted to
protect thei r farmers, thei r texti l e producers and thei r steel mi l l ers, and
to grant thei r compani es ever greater ri ghts over other peopl e' s
i ntel l ectual property.
I nstead we need a cl ear and non- negoti abl e sl i di ng scal e of trade
pri vi l eges. The very poorest nati ons shoul d be permitted, if they wi sh,
to ful l y protect thei r i nfant i ndustri es, j ust as Bri tai n di d duri ng the earl y
days of the I ndustri al revol uti on or the US between 1 789 and 1 9 1 3.
· ·
As they become richer they woul d be forced to g radual ly drop those
protecti ons. The ver poorest countries shoul d al so be al l owed free use
of ri ch countries' i ntel l ectual propery, for trade withi n thei r own
borders and wi th other poor nati ons.
These measures, of cou rse, a re fai r onl y i n so much as they permi t
the devel opment of economies and the transfer of weal th between
nati ons. They do not deal with the other great source of i njusti ce: the
corporati ons' abi l ity to force nati ons i nto destructive competi ti on,
abandoni ng the l aws defendi ng workers and the envi ronment i n order
to attract thei r custom. Trul y fai r trade requi res a further set of
measures: corporati ons shoul d not be al l owed to trade between
nati ons unti l they can show that they are meeti ng the standards set by
the I nternati onal Labour Organisati on and the UN.
The WTO woul d therefore become a l i censi ng authority, a bi t l i ke
the heal th and safety executive i n Britai n. Li ke those parti ci pati ng i n
vol u ntar fai r trade today, al l c�rporati ons engaged i n I nternati onal
trade woul d be obl i ged to empl oy moni tori ng compani es, whi ch woul d
ensure rules were respected and repor beck to the WTO. Any
corporati on empl oyi ng sl aves or usi ng l ethal machi nery, banni ng
uni ons or t i ppi ng toxic waste i nto ri vers woul d be forbi dden from
tradi ng i nternati onal ly. I f we were to add the provi si on that al l
compani es shoul d pay the f ul l envi ronmental cost of the resources they
use, we woul d possess a complete mechani sm for ensuri ng onl y the
ni ce guys surive.
None of this would be possi bl e wi thout a worl d trade organi sati on. I n
hel pi ng the poor maj ority t o pursue thi s agenda, we can transform the
WTO from a body that enforces unfai rness i nto one that makes
economi c justice the pri nci pl e by whi ch the world i s r un.
George Monbiot is Ihe oulhor of The Age of Consent: a manifesto for a new world order wwmonbiot c
2.0 Prelude To Cancun
2.1 Why A Derailed WTO Ministerial Is The Best
Outcome For The South - Walden Bello
I nter Press Service, 4 September 2003
the fifth mi ni steri al of the World
Trade Organi sati on (WTO) fast
approachi ng, the organi sati on
that was hai l ed at its foundi ng i n
1 995 as the crowni ng poi nt of
gl obal economi c governance is i n
g ri dl ock.
Despi te an obvi ous efor to
put a positive spi n to negoti ati ons
over the l ast two years, the
recently i ssued draft mi ni steri a l
decl arati on evi nces l ittle
consensus on al l the burni ng
issues divi di ng WTO members.
Stalemated Talks
WTO Di rector General
Supachai Panitchpakdi trumpeted
a "successful " l ast mi nute
compromi se on the contenti ous
i ssue of the relati onshi p of trade­
related i ntel l ectual proper ri ghts
(TRI Ps) and publ i c heal th i n the
manufacture and i mport of vi tal
drugs. Many a nal ysts contend,
however, thot the compromi se
l eans more toward protecti ng the
patent ri ghts of Northern
pharmaceuti cal companies than
promoti ng access to l ife-savi ng or
l ife-prol ongi ng med ici ne for
mi l l i ons of peopl e i n the South
sufferi ng from HI V-AI DS a nd
other epi demi cs. It is very
doubtful that i t can unbl ock
negoti ati ons i n the other areas,
where North-South diferences as
wel l as i nterneci ne disputes
among the ri ch countries, are
more sol i dly entrenched.
Pri or to the compromi se, the
tal ks had been stal emated by the
US' refusal to budge from its
posi ti on that l ooseni ng of patent
ri ghts s houl d be l i mi ted onl y to
HIV-AI DS, mal ari a, and
tubercul osi s drugs, defyi ng the
decl arati on of the Fourth WTO
Mi ni steri al i n Doha, 200 1 , whi ch
cl earl y pl aced publ i c heal th
i ssues above corporate
i ntel l ectual propery ri ghts.
A l ast-mi nute attempt by the
European Uni on and the United
States to set up a negoti ati ng
framework t o revive t he stal l ed
tal ks on agricul tural l i beral i sati on
appears to have backfired, as
devel opi ng countries bi terl y
cri ti ci sed the two tradi ng
superpowers for regressi ng to
thei r behavi our duri ng the last
years of the Uruguay Round
( 1 986-94) , craft i ng a backroom
deal wi th no partici pati on from
the 1 44 other member countri es.
Brazi l , I ndi a, and Chi na -the
powerhouses of the devel opi ng
worl d- i mmedi atel y responded
wi th a paper tel l i ng the
Europeans and Americans to qui t
beati ng around the bush and
radi cal l y cut the hi gh l evel s of
subsi di sati on responsi bl e for the
dumpi ng of cheap grai n a nd
meat on worl d markets that i s
putti ng hundreds of thousands of
devel opi ng country farmers out of
busi ness.
There has been no movement
whatsoever on negoti ati ons to
ri ng under WTO juri sdi cti on the
so-cal led "trade-rel ated" i ssues
of i nvestment, competiti on pol i cy;
tra nsparency i n government
procurement, and trade
faci l i tati on, whi ch Brussel s and
Washi ngton have regarded as the
centerpi ece of the Doha
Decl arati on . I ndeed, there i s
fundamental di sagreement over
whether or not there i s a
mandate to even begi n
negoti ati ons. The devel opi ng
countries assert that the expl i ci t
consensus", of each member
country must be obtai ned to
l aunch negoti ati ons. The
European Uni on ( EU) and other
devel oped countries, on the other
hand, cl ai m that there i s al ready
agreement to negoti ate and i t i s
onl y the "modal i ti es" of the.
negoti ati ons that need to be
i roned out.
The Civil Society
Some observers say that the
three key i ngredi ents of the
"Seattl e scenari o" are emergi ng,
al l udi ng to the "formul a" that
produced the famous col l apse of
the Thi rd Mi nisteri al in Seattl e i n
December 1 999:
The EU-US stal emate i n
agricul ture i s agai n at centre­
Devel opi ng countries are more
resentful than ever;
Ci vi l soci ety i s on the move.
The ci vi l soci ety factor must
not be underesti mated. The
numbers are not cl ear, but at
least 1 5, 000 peopl e from al l over
the world may show u p i n
Cancun. Thi s woul d be the
equi val ent of fi ve percent of
Cancun's popul ati on of 300, 000
a cri ti cal mass i f any. At the
moment, up to 1 0,000 peasants
l ed by the Mexi can farmers'
group UNORCA and the gl obal
peasant federati on Vi a
Campesi na are pl anni ng to
march to the Conventi on Centre
located in the restricted secti on of
the hotel zone to del i ver a
message to the mi ni steri al
assembl y demandi ng that the
WTO "get out of agri cul ture" .
Another coal iti on cal l ed "Espaci o
Mexicano" i s setti ng up a week­
l ong " Forum of the Peopl e" that
wi l l cl i max on September 1 3 wi th
a march coordi nated wi th
demonstrati ons i n scores of other
ci ti es throughout the worl d on the
theme '�ga i nst Gl obal i sati on
and War".
Perhaps the most si gni fi cant
devel opment is the deci si on of
the Zapati stas, the a rmed
i nsurrecti onar force based i n
i ndi genous and peasant
communiti es i n the forests and
hi ghl ands of Chi apas i n southern
Mexico, to throw thei r wei ght
behi nd the protests. II I f the
Zapatistas j oi n the mobi l i sati on
agai nst the WTO, then because
of thei r great presti ge throughout
Mexico, the whol e si tuati on wi l l
be t ransformed/' says Hector de
l a Cueva, one of the coordi nators
of Espado Mexi cano. With.
thousands of Mexicans i nspi red to
go to Cancun and anti -WTO
acti ons throughout Mexico, the
Zapati sta deci si on coul d
transform what i s sti l l seen by
most Mexi cans as a forei gn
gatheri ng i n a "Yankee tourist
col ony" i nto a massi ve
nati onal protest.
Mexi can authori ti es are agitated, despite effors by l eaders of the
i nternati onal movement agai nst corporate-driven gl obal i sati on to
assure them that thei r demonstrati ons and meeti ngs wi l l be nonvi ol ent.
I t turns out, i n fact, that the federal government has been compi l i ng an
"enemi es' l i st" of peopl e t o cl osel y monitor duri ng the mi nisterial .
Leaked to the press i n mid-August, the government memo contai ns
about 60 names, among them Ecuadori an I ndi an l eader Bl anca
Cha ncoso, I ndi an physi ci st Vandana Shi va, and Ameri can agro­
ecol ogist Peter Rosset, who were desi gnated as "ul tras. "
Institutional Crisis
The current travai l s of the WTO are a conti nuati on of the
i nstituti onal cri si s that f i rst broke i n Seattl e i n December 1 999,
tri ggered by resi stance of ci vi l soci ety groups to t he WTO's dri ve to
subordi nate cri ti cal di mensi ons of soci al l ife to corporate trade, by
devel opi ng countries' resentment of a few devel oped countri es
i mposi ng a doctri nai re g l obal l i beral i sati on programme i ni mi cal to
thei r i nterests, and by the wi despread reputi ati on of an u ndemocratic
deci si on-maki ng structure.
The depth of the 'reform needed was underl i ned by then UK
Secretary of State Stephen Byers a few days after the Seattl e col l apse:
"The.WTO wi l l not be abl e to conti nue i n its present form. There has
to be f undamental and radi cal change i n order for i t to meet the
needs and aspi rati ons of al l 1 34 of its members. "
No reforms fol l owed i n t he wake of Seattl e, and onl y US-EU strong­
armi ng of the devel opi ng countri es i n the context of the 9- 1 1 events
produced a decl arati on mandati ng a l i mited set of negoti ati ons to
f urther trade l i beral i sati on duri ng the Fourt h Mi ni steri al in Doha,
Qatar, i n November 200 1 . But the so-cal l ed ' Doha Round" qUickl y
degenerated i nto a stal emate.
Crisis of Globalization
The WTO's i nstituti onal cri si s, however, is i tsel f a refl ecti on of an
even deeper, more comprehensive cri si s -that of the g l obal ist project
of accel erated i ntegrati on of producti on and markets. One key tri gger
of thi s cri si s was the Asi an fi nanci al cri si s of 1 997, whi ch brought
home the l esson that the capital account l i beral i sati on that was a
centerpiece of the gl obal i st i deol ogy coul d be profoundl y destabi l i si ng,
resul ti ng i n such tragedi es as that of I ndonesi a, where 22 mi l l i on
peopl e fel l bel ow t he poverty l i ne i n t he space of a few weeks.
× ·ªl

' '
� J�
Thi s di screditi ng of the presumed benefits of unfettered capi tal
mobi l ity coul d not but provoke a wi de-ranging exami nati on of the
cl ai ms of another key tenet of the gl obal ist proj ect: that trade
l i beral i sati on promoted prosperity. The resul ts of many investi gati ons of
thi s assumptioh carri ed out in the l ate 1 990s were perhaps best
summed up by Worl d Bank researchers Matthi as Lundberg and Lynn
Squi re : 'The poor are far more vul nera ble to shifs i n rel ati ve
i nternational pri ces, and thi s vul nerabi l ity i s magnifi ed by the country's
openness to trade. At l east i n the short term, gl obal isati on appears to
i ncrease both povery a nd i nequal ity. "
As the doctri ne and i nsti tuti ons of capital mobi l ity and trade
l i beral i sati on were i ncreasi ngl y eroded by a cri si s of legiti macy, the
gl obal i st project was further u ndermi ned by another momentous
devel opment: the stock market col l apse of March 2000, whi ch
i naugurated an era of gl obal recessi on and defl ati on brought about by
the excesses of specul ative capital as wel l as gl obal overproducti on.
Faced by an era of scarcity, ri si ng j obl essness, and sl ow growth,
economi c el ites i n both Europe and the US have i ncreasi ngly turned

away from promoti ng the proj ect of an i ntegroted gl obal economy,
wi th obstacl es to capital a nd trade flows reduced to a mi ni mum that
served the uni versal i nterests of the g l obal corporate cl ass, and moved
towards pol i ci es of protecti ng the i nterests of nati onal or regi onal
capital ist el ites.
The EU- US confl i cts over agriculture, steel tari ffs, pharmaceutical s,
GMO's, ai rcraft subsi di es and Mi crosoft's practices i n Europe reflect
thi s ri si ng protecti oni sm in both Brussels and Washi ngton. These
economi c confl i cts have been exacerbated by the divergent pol iti cal
paths on I raq and the Mi ddl e East taken by the US and the
cornerstone countries of the EU - - Germany and France-whi ch have
unravel ed the "Atl antic Al l i ance" that won the Col d War agai nst the
Soviet Uni on.
Bush's uni l ateral i st economi cs, i n pari cul ar, marks a turni ng away
from the condomi ni um of gl obal capi ta l that underpi nned the
multi l ateral i nsti tuti ons -the I MF, World Bank, and WTO- duri ng the
Cl i nton era. I t i s a response to the cri si s of the gl obal ist project that,
wi th i ts brazen defense of US corporate capital exempl ifi ed i n i ts stand
on TRI Ps and publ i c heal th, i s l i kely to deepen that cri si s and the cri si s
of the mul ti l ateral i nstituti ons that were used to advance the
g l obal i sati on agenda. For wi th the EU and the US at l oggerheads on a
whol e range of i ssues, it has become that much more di fi cult for both
to mount a coordi nated strategy to spl i t and i nti mi date devel opi ng
countries at the WTO on matters where the two capital ist centres share
a common i nterest, l i ke pushi ng through a WTO- enforced i nvestment
agreement, whi ch the devel opi ng counties have stubbornly opposed.
False Choices
With the WTO framework fai l i ng, both the EU and the US have
turned to bi l ateral and multi l ateral trade agreements as a vehi cl e for
l i beral i sati on that woul d serve thei r particul ar i nterests. The race i s on,
and t he US appears t o be ahead. Washi ngton recently announced free
trade agreements (HA) with Chi l e and Si ngapore, and thi s comi ng
October i t wi l l unvei l an HA wi th Thai l and at t he Asi a Paci fi c
Economi c Cooperati on (APEC) summi t i n that country. Moreover, over
the l ast two years, the Bush admi nistrati on has devoted for more effor
to concl udi ng the Free Trade of the Ameri cas (FTM) than to j ump­
starti ng the WTO.
Devel opi ng countri es are just as wary of FTAs as of they are of the
WTO, recogni si ng that they are just as much gui ded by the hegemoni c
i nterests of the stronger partners.
To those who argue that the WTO is better for devel opi ng countr
interests than FlAs because it has i nsti tuti onal i sed rul es a nd
procedu res that constrai n the more powerul countries, devel opi ng
country a nalysts such as Ai l een Kwa, Geneva representative of Focus
on the Gl obal South and author of the expose "Behi nd the Scenes at
the WO' , poi nt to ri ch country governments' systemati c i nti mi dati on
and coerci on of Southern countri es i n the l ast few years i n an attempt
to pry open thei r markets, h i di ng behi nd a thi ck vei l of non-
tra nspa rency.
I ndeed, devel opi ng countri es must cease al l owi ng themsel ves to be
boxed i nto such fal se choi ces and star worki ng on real a lternati ve
arrangements, such as creati ng regi onal economi c blocs or
restructuri ng economic exi sti ng ones such as Mercosur and ASEAN to
serve as effective engi nes of coordi nated econ

mic progress vi a
pol i ci es that effecti vel y subordi nate trade to devel opment.
Failure is Success
One cannot di scount that despite thei r deepeni ng differences, the
US and the EU may sti l l pul l together to coerce devel opi ng countri es
i nto approvi ng new i niti ati ves i n trade a nd trade-rel ated l i bera l i sati on
i n Cancun
However, the i ncreasi ngl y l i kel y scenari o i s a mi nisteria l that wi l l
produce no agreements for si gnifi cant new l i beral i sati on a nd
essenti al l y reproduce the stal emate i n Geneva. For devel opi ng
countries constantl y under si ege to open thei r markets or cede control
of areas thus for the preserve of national pol icy-maki ng -l i ke
i nvestment and competiti on-to the Washi ngton a nd Brussel s­
domi nated WTO, a fai l ed, stal emated mi nisteri al i s the best outcome.
I t gi ves them t he breathi ng space t o organi se and coordi nate thei r
defense and al lows them a n d gl obal ci vi l society the opport uni t to
mount the reversal of corporate-dri ven gl obal i sati on that even the
free-trade mouthpi ece Economist sees as a very real threat to the
future of capi tal i sm because of the Jlexcesses" of gl obal capi tal .
2. 2 WO Virodhi Bharatiya Jan Abhiyan
( I ndi an Peopl e's Campai gn against WTO)
Moiling Addreu; 32ó0,Sector 'D', Voson! Kuni, New Delhi 1T0 030,INDIA
Tel; 00ºT- !T-ó8º708º,ó5ó18ó8,Emoil;spshuklo@id.elh.nel;rfsle@ndl.vsnl:nel.in
Press Release
27th August 2003
A delegation of WTO Wirodh i Bharatiya Jan Abhiyan ( I ndian
Peopl e' s Campai gn agai nst WTO) consisting of Shri vP Singh, Shri
H. D. Devegowda, Shri I . K. Gujral , Aboni Roy ( RSP) , Shri Debabrata
Biswas (Al l I ndi a Forward Bl ockL Shri M. K. Pandhe (CI TU) , Shri AK.
Anjan (CPI ) , Ms. Sri l ata Swaminathan, ( CPI -ML) , Shri Shri S. P Sh ukl a
(Caordinator, I PCAWTO) , Dr. Va-dana Shiva (RFSTE) , Ms Amaiiit
Kaur (AITUC) and Shri Ashok Rao ( NCOA) met with the Pri me Minister
i n his office at 5:30 pm on 26th August 2003. The Commerce
Mi nister was present at the meeting.
The del egati on stressed the fol l owing five-poi nt charter of demands
formu lated by the Abhiyan :
• Government must not al l ow the i ssues of investment; competiti on
policy; government procurement; and trade facil itation to be
negotiated in WTO.
• Government must not put on offer the sectors such as water,
energy, heal th and education in the on-goi ng negotiations on servi ces.
• An unprecedented agrarian distress i s being experienced i n the
country. Anti- peasant, anti peopl e pol ici es of Government have
engendered the crisi s. Exposure of I ndian agricul ture to the notoriousl y
vol atil e and highly distorted gl obal agri cul ture market i s aggravating
the crisis. The WTO perspective on agricul ture and the so-cal l ed
i nternational discipl ine that i s evol vi ng there on agri cul ture, are tatal l y
detri mental to the i nterest of the vast majority of our peopl e consisting
of smal l and margi nal peasants, the agricul tural workers, the rural and
urban poor. I n the circumstances, we i nsist that the Government
recognize the crisi s situation i n agri cul ture, put an end to their anti­
peopl e pol i cies, and, in particul ar, firmly recl aim and assert our
unqual i fied ri ght t o i mpose quantitative restricti ons on imports to
promote the devel opment of our agri cul ture and to safeguard the
l ivel ihood of seventy percent of our popul ati on.

Si nce the i ssues now bei ng
brought up i n WTO negotiations
fal l withi n the Concu rrent list of
our Constitution, there shoul d be
ful l consul tation wi th the State
Governments and no substantive
move shoul d be made without
such consultati on.

Above all, the fundamental
questions such as empl oyment
prospects, food security, the
safeguardi ng of the livel i hood of
the overwhel ming majority of our
peopl e, t he provision of basi c
services and infrastructure and
the federa I spi rit of ou r polity are
i nvolved, there can be no
question of such negoti ations
being carried on without taki ng
Parl iament into confidence and
without its expl icit approval of the
Government stand. I f that
necessitates Constitutional
amendment, it must be brought
In the course of discussi ons
that fol l owed, Shri VP Si ngh
wel comed t he formation of the
Group of seventeen devel opi ng
countries i ncl uding I ndi a, Chi na,
Brazi l , Mexi co, South Afri ca,
Argenti na, Thai l and and others in
the context of the negotiati ons on
agricul ture. I t was however
poi nted that the j oi nt paper
submitted by the Group needs
strengthening as regards the right
to use quantitative restrictions,
which is of vital i mporance i n our
context. It was al so suggested
that the emergi ng sol idarity of
devel opi ng countries needs to be
strengthened not onl y on the
i ssue of agri cul ture but across the
board, pari cul arl y i n regard to
the oppositi on to the so-cal l ed
Si ngapore i ssues.
It was also stressed that the
Government shoul d undertake a
comprehensi ve review of how the
operati on of WO over the l ast
eight years a nd the
i mpl ementati on of economic
reforms over the l ast decade
have adversel y affected our
industry, the worki ng cl asses, our
agriculture and the maj ority of
our peopl e. The pol itical and
constituti onal i mpl i cations of the
WO negoti ations i n the context
of i ssues l ike agriculture,
education, heal th, energy were
pointed out and the Pri me
Mini ster was urged to convene a
conference of State Agriculture
Mi nisters forhwith before
formul ating the government stand
on agriculture for t he Cancun
WO meeti ng. The delegation
stressed that the process of
commodification of education,
heal th, water must be resisted.
The serious i mplications of the
growing corporate monopol y on
seeds were stressed. I n thi s
context the attenti on of PM was
drawn to the havoc caused by the
Monsanto hybrid maize seeds in
Bihar I t was pOinted out how the
devel oped countries have been
a l lowed to side-step the debate
on the dangerous i mpl i cations of
TRI PS agreement in respect of
bi o-diversity, piracy of traditi onal
knowl edge and growing
monopoly of mul ti nati onal s on
seeds. The need t o insi st
on a
thorough-goi ng review of TRI PS
which was provided for i n the
Doha decl arati on was stressed.
The Commerce Mi nister who
responded at PM's i nstance sai d
that there was growi ng
dissatisfaction among devel oping
countries a bout the EU-US stand
on agriculture. He however fel t
that the present l evel of tariff in
agriculture products provided
adequate" comfor" and the
effort of government woul d be to
maintain that l evel . As regards
the Singapore issues he said that
concerns about the i mpl ications
of the multi l ateral discipl ines i n
these areas were being fel t widely
in developing worl d and hoped
to conti nue the stance of
opposition/questi oning in regards
to these issues at diferent l evel s.
He al so· fel t that broadl y a
nati onal consensus seems to be
emergi ng on the issues facing the
country in the context of the
forhcoming WO meeting at
Shri VP Si ngh reiterated that
the tariffs constituted a very weak
a nd i nefective instrument for
safeguardi ng our agriculture as
the negotiati ons woul d inevitabl y
l ead to thei r bei ng reduced to
l ow l evel s. On the other hand,
the degree of subsidization of
agriculture i n EU and US was not
only enormous but al so continued
to g row under one name or the
other. I n the circumstances, i t was
crucial to recl aim a nd assert the
right to impose quantitative
restricti ons on agriculture
products to safeguard the
l iveli hood of our peopl e.

2.3 Call To Cancun: Halt T he GATS Negotiations. Take
Essential Services, Such As Water, Out Of The WO.
Civil Society Submission To The World Trade
Organisation's (WO) 5th Ministerial Conference In
Cancun, 1 0-1 4 September 2003
As trade mi nisters from the WTO's 146 member cou ntries meet i n
Cancun, we cal l on them to hal t di scussi ons on the General
Agreement on Trade i n Servi ces (GATS) and to resist any contrary
attempts whi ch seek to speed up these negotiations. The United States
and the European Uni on, whose corporati ons have most to gai n from
these tal ks, are pushi ng for a pol i ti cal decl arati on i n Cancun cal l i ng
on al l WTO members to submit thei r services, i ncl udi ng essenti al
servi ces, to the GATS. For these corporati ons, GATS promises access
to new markets and enhanced ri ghts .
I n Cancun, promi ses made by devel oped countri es i n other WTO
areas wi l l be used to extract progress on GATS, even though GATS i s
not a key agenda i tem. Thi s puts i mmense pressu re on devel opi ng
countri es to commi t more of thei r seri ces, i ncl udi ng basi c services
such as water, to the WTO's bi ndi ng trade rules.
The GATS proponents repeatedly 'frame thei r ambi ti ons i n the
context of devel opment. They refer to the 'Doha Development
Agenda'. I n water specifical l y, the EU publ i cl y cl ai ms that current
negoti ati ons, 'coul d potenti al ly contri bute to i nternati onal efforts to
i mprove access to water. ' Yet in confi denti al i nternal memos beteen
the European Commi ssi on and the top three European water
compani es ( Suez, Vi vendi and RWE), the EC states that, 'one of the
mai n obiectives i n the current round of negoti ati ons i s to achi eve real
and meani ngful access for European servi ce provi ders for thei r exports
of envi ronmental servi ces [wh i
h i ncl udes water serices]. '
I n J ul y 2002, as part of ongoi ng GATS negoti ati ons, t he EU
submitted demands t o 109 countries, requesti ng ambi ti ous l evel s of
market access for its corporati ons. This i ncl uded requests to 72
countri es, several of them l east devel oped countries, requesti ng access
to thei r water serices. The US a l so submitted extensive and
controversi al demands, whi ch under the gui se of 'transpa rency' render
domestic decisi on-maki ng vul nerabl e to forei gn commerci al i nterests.
2.4 Press Release
Devel opi ng countries have every reason to resist such
far- reachi ng demands. So far, the l i beral i sati on of water services has
caused grave probl ems i n cou ntries where the i nvol vement of forei gn
mul ti national s has typical l y made water more expensive than poor
househol ds can afford.
Any country maki ng GATS commitments i n water woul d bi nd such
l i beral i sati on for the futu re, maki ng it effectivel y i mpossibl e for it to
withdraw, even if service provi si on is unaffordabl e to the poor, the
water service i s of poor qual ity, or a future government wishes to
change the pol i cy.
The United Nati ons Sub-Commissi on on Human Rights, concerned
with the effect of GATS on universal service obl i gati ons, suggests that
GATS confl icts with the human rights obl igati ons, of WTO member
countries . Barel y a year ago at the UN Worl d Summi t on Sustai nabl e
Devel opment i n Johannesburg, heads of the governments made
commitments to hal ve the proportion of peopl e wi thout access to
water and that of those without access to sanitation by 201 5. But the
evidence from many communities, especi al l y those in the devel opi ng
worl d, is that the gl obal water crisis wi l l worsen if water is subj ected to
WTO rul es that put corporate i nterests ahead of the right to water as
fundamental to l ife.
I n order to make these obl i gati ons a real ity we cal l on Mi nisters
meeti ng in Cancu n to hal t the current GATS negotiations and keep
essenti al services, such as water, out of the WTO.
Stop the GAT S attackl

Moratori um on al l commitments under General Agreement on
Trade i n Services (GATS) " is t he demand of more t han 650 si gnatories
i ncl udi ng Panchayat Presidents and representatives, trade uni ons,
farmers groups, mass organizati ons, NGOs and a l arge number of
i ndividual s i n the country. They have voiced this demand by endorsi ng
a l etter prepared by EQUATI ONS ( Bangal ore), MANTHAN (Badwani)
and Focus on the Gl obal South (Mumbai ). This letter, whi ch wi l l be
presented to the Pri me Mi nister and Commerce mi nistry officials,
si gnal s the begi nning of a people's campai gn agai nst the GATS.
Among the trade uni ons and mass organi zations that have made
thi s demand are the All I ndia Trade Uni on Congress (AI TUC) , Nati onal
All i ance of Peoples Movements, Mumba i Gra hak Panchayat, Shahar
Vi kas Manch of Mumbat, Kokan Vi kas Sangharsh Sami ti , KRRS
(Karnatakal, the Ni mad Malwa Mazdoor Ki saan Sangathan (Madhya
Pradesh) and others. Si gni fi cantly, more than 200 Panchayat
representatives from Tami l Nadu and Andhra Pradesh have already
written to t
Pri me Mi ni ster.
A part of the " bui lt-i n-agenda" of the World Trade Organi sati on
(WTO) , the GATS was reopened for negoti ati ons by the begi nni ng of
2000. From the arduous negoti ati ons on modali ti es emerged a non­
multilateral mechani sm known as a "request-offer" approach for
proceedi ng ahead wi th negoti ati ons under the GATS. Member
countri es of the WTO were asked to make "requests" to other Member
countri es, whi ch i nclude: ( a) the sectors that they want the other
Member(s) t o open up t o l i berali sati on ( b) t he mode of service supply
to be opened up u nder that Sectori a nd (C) the quantum of
li berali sati on that needs to be carried out under each mode of supply
withi n that sector. The Members a re respondi ng to these requests by
maki ng "i ni ti al offers" Thi s has overwhelmed most developi ng
countri es, at a ti me when they have been pushi ng the WTO to
i mplement an assessment of i mpacts of services trade l i berali zati on .
Why moratori um on GATS offers?
GATS covers more or less all the essenti al publ i c and pri vate
servi ces suppli ed and consumed by soci ety. I n spite of thi s fact, the
Government of I ndi a i s not carryi ng out a publ i c debate i n any for um,
i ncludi ng the Parl i ament, t o di scuss how its commi tments u nder GATS
would i mpact the developmental fabri c of I ndi an soci ety. I rrespective
of the fact that a n umber of services get covered u nder the State a nd
Concurrent li st of the I ndi an Consti tuti on, several State level offi ci als
are completely unaware of the GATS itself. I f t hi s i s the apathy s hown
by the Centre towards States, nothi ng better can be expected in the
context of Panchayats and Munici pal Corporati ons. Panchayat
Presi dents and representati ves were shocked when they were
confronted wi th the experi ences
of l i berali sati on i n essenti al servi ces such as heal th, educati on,
sanitati on and water i n other developi ng countries.
The lack of transparency associ ated wi th the existi ng l i berali sati on
agenda, the undermi ni ng of federal i sm and the lack of competence
wit hi n the Commerce mi ni stry are some of the several i ssues
hi ghl i ghted i n the leter, a nd underl i ne the need for a standstill i n the

negoti ati ons.
The upcomi ng Fi fth WO Mi nisteri al meeti ng i n Cancun i s expected
to provi de the mandate for further negoti ati ons and provide a
deadl i ne for fi nal commitments. The demand from I ndi an ci vi l soci ety
is that i nstead of accepti ng thi s process as a fait accompl i the
Government of I ndi a shoul d l ead the devel opi ng countri es i n cal l i ng
for the much-needed assessment of GATS and removal of al l essenti al
servi ces from the ambi t of the GATS.
The si gnatori es to the letter bel ieve that the right to essenti al
services i s i nal ienabl e to al l ci tizens of I ndia. Further, equity, justi ce and
di gnity i n the del i very of essenti al services is i ntegral for l ong-term
soci etal stabi l ity and equal ity. Si gnatori es to the letter cal l upon the
I ndi an Government to respect the I ndi an Constituti on and
fundamental pri nci pl es of democracy and act upon t he concerns
expressed i n t he l etter.
For further details kindly contact:
Benny Kuruvilla (EQUATIONS) bennyk@equitabletourism.org (080.91.5244988)
Sholmoli Gutiol (Focus on the Global South) sgutol@focusweb.org (Mobile: 09886020362)
3.0 From The Conference
3.1 Cancun Number Crunching Undermines Claims Of
WT O Democracy
Massive Negotiating I nequality Reinforces Rich
Countries' Hand
World Devel opment Movement, PRESS RELEASE,
For immediate release: !0September 2003
The Worl d Devel opment Movement (WDM) today ( 1 0 Sept)
reveal ed that the EU has a massive 65 1 peopl e in its del egation at the
Worl d Trade Organisation Mi nisteri al meeti ng i n Cancun, Mexi co. Thi s
compares wi th Rwanda who has j ust three del egates . WDM al so
cal cul ated that the two richest del egations, the EU (65 1 ) and the US
(2 1 2) , representi ng approxi matel y 1 0% of the worl d's popul ation,
have a total combi ned del egati on of 863, over three ti mes t he total of
235 for Chi na, I ndi a, Brazi l , Argenti na and South Africa who
col l ectivel y represent 5 1 % of the world's popul ation. It i s al so over
twice the negotiati ng strength of the combi ned delegati ons of the 30
Least Devel oped Cou ntry members of the WTO (377) .
The total number of del egates from the seven richest nati ons, the
G7, i n Cancun is 805
Barry Coates, WDM's Di rector, said: "The vast di sparity in the si zes
of del egations is yet another i ndicator that the odds are stacked
agai nst the poorest nati ons in the negotiati ons at the Cancun
Mi nisterial . Combi ned with the deepl y unfai r negotiati ng process, the

devel oping worl d has l ittle chance to achieve fai rer trade rul es. The
one member one vote ideal of the WTO so often cited by its defenders
col l apses under the real ity of the massive i nequal ities in negotiati ng
strength. "
"The EU's massive del egati on is much l arger than the 594 it sent to
Seattl e and 502 i n Doha. This was condemned as a negotiating
mismatch too far between rich and poor countri es. Some compared it
to putti ng Mi ke Tyson i nto the ring with a smal l boy. Now Mi ke Tyson
has a twi n brother. "
"Thi s i s yet another exampl e of why devel opi ng cou ntries urgentl y
need democratic reform of the WTO to strengthen thei r hand and
protect t hem from bei ng trampl ed by t he trade el ephants. "
Note: Delegation numbers include both NGOs and business advisors.
Press releases and analysis are available at `-Í·¬¹Y ·d··o:�,·¦
3.2 Why Are We Protesting Today?
Press release by Participants in the
peaceful protest at the Cancun
Convention Center, Sept. 1Û, 2ÛÛó.

Our act of protest today is one that is meant to symbolize the fact
that peopl es throughout the worl d have turned their backs on an
i nstitution that has become a source of gl obal poverty, i nequal ity,
di sempowerment, and envi ronmental cri si s.
Once presented as the premi er i nstitution of economic gl obal
governance of the 21 st century, the actions of the WTO over the l ast
ei ght years-moves taken at the behest of the powerful corporate
i nterests in the United States and the European Union-have reveal ed
it to be nothi ng but an i nstrument of corporate power.
The WTO is undemocratic
Through its use of non-transparent deci si on-maki ng mechani sms, the
WTO has shown i tsel f to be i n vi ol ati on of the basi c rul es of
democracy. I n the WTO, parl i amentary i nstituti ons are reserved for
speech maki ng whil e real deci si ons are taken in i nformal , restricted
"Green Rooms" and "mi ni mi nisterial" whose partici pants are
handpicked by a few powerful governments, foremost of whi ch are the
United States and the European Uni on. The vast maj ority of the 1 46
member countries of the WTO are devel opi ng countri es. Yet the strong
rul e because there are no democratic rul es that govern deci si on­
making. Thi s is a 1 5th centu ry i nstitution that i s masquerading as a 2 1
century organization .
� •• �/·

¬ �� ••
The WO is anti-devel opment
The free trade biases that the WTO promotes are real ly
mechanisms that al l ow the corporate monopol i es to pry open and
monopol ize devel oping country markets by suppressi ng efforts at
nati onal devel opment. The dumping of hi ghl y subsidized agri cultural
products of agri business interests that i s institutional ized i n the WTO's
Agreement on Agri cul ture (AOA) is destroyi ng the agri cul tural sector of
devel oping countries. The Trade related i ntel l ectual Propery Ri ghts
(TRI PS) Agreement is nothi ng but a corporate mechanism to privatize
and profit from knowl edge, even i f the price are the deaths of mil lions
of peopl e owi ng to their l ack of access to critical medi ci ne. Last week's
so-cal l ed "agreement" si mpl y perpetuates this .
Membership in the WTO makes it i mpossi bl e for devel opi ng
countries to use control of their external trade vi a tari ffs and quotas as
par of a strategy of devel opment. Thi s use of trade pol icy for
devel opment was used by earl ier devel opi ng societies i ncl udi ng the
United States, many European countri es, and Japan. Today, not onl y i s
the use of trade pol icy for i ndustri al ization effectivel y outl awed by the
WTO regime, but the hegemoni c powers i n the organization, the EU
and the US, are making a determi ned drive to bri ng under "WTO
di scipl i ne" other mechani sms that have l ong been used by
governments as key i nstruments of nati onal economic devel opment:
investment pol i cy, competition pol i cy, and government procurement
pol i cy.
d |
Aside from pavi ng the way for transnational corporate control over
vital services such as water a nd educati on, the WTO's General
Agreement on Trade i n Serices i s real l y an i nvestment agreement
masqueradi ng as a trade agreement, a nd its removal of restricti ons on
forei gn i nvestment i n services wi l l l ead t o one more vital a rea of the
economy detached from nati onal devel opment pol i cy.
The WTO is obsol ete.
The corporate pri nci pl es that guide the WTO, whi ch put profits over
human rights, soci al equi ty, democracy, and ecol ogi cal equi l i bri um,
a re the pi l l ars of a paradi gm that i s obsol ete and unsustai nabl e.
I mpl ementation of thi s economi c paradi gm has resul ted i n vastly
greater poverty, i nequal ity, and envi ronmental destabi l ization i n the
South and North over the l ast two decades. The WTO is part of a
system of gl obal economi c power whose ti me has passed. Movi ng
forard to serve the i nterests of peopl e and the envi ronment means
embraci ng economi c pri nci pl es that put peopl e, community, and the
envi ronment over profits. Movi ng forward means l eavi ng the WTO
behi nd.
Joi n us i n turni ng our backs on an undemocratic, a nti­
devel opment, and obsol ete i nstitution.
3. 3 Urgent Memo, 1 3 September 2003
This is the copy of a memo found in
the US and bU press boxes at the WL
Convention center. Picked up by a
number of journalists, it was soon
obvious that it was a fake planted by
a civil society organisation. The issues
raised in the memo although ore not
fa r from the truth.
From: Pascal Lamy and Robert Zoel l i ck
To: I nternati onal Chamber of Commerce (ICC) , the European Seri ces
Forum ( ESF) , the Confederation of Bri ti sh I ndustry ( CBI) , Nati onal
Forei gn Trade Counci l ( NFTC) Federation of German I ndustries ( BDI )
a nd others
Re: Progress on your wi shes for new issues and services at Cancun
negotiati ons
Dear Si rs
2nd draft Mi nisteri al text out today is even better tha n expected.
Have i gnored majority of worl d's countri es j ust as you i nstructed. Bri ef
summary bel ow re your mai n obj ectives
I nvestment in
You sai d you wanted i nvestment negotiations i n and some tough
i nvestor protection. I nvestment i s i n and so i s the cl ever phrase other
el ements rai sed by members" so thi ngs l i ke investor to state di sputes
and portfol i o i nvestment can sti l l be covered. You shoul d profi t from
Ki l l of competition
We took you r hi nt when you sai d "I CC urges agreement i n Cancun
t o push forward these negoti ati ons and fi nal i ze t he negoti ati ng agenda
to i ncl ude the key i ssues of i nvestment, trade faci l itati on and
government procurement" You del i berately l eft out competition so we
have left our opi ni ons open on that.
Trade facil itation and Government Procurement
I n
I n despite t he complete l ack of expl i cit consensus and concern by
devel opi ng countri es. Thi s shoul d keep you happy and ensure
southern markets i n parti cul ar are opened up for al l you r members.
Link to progress on Agriculture
You wi l l real l y l i ke thi s one - a footnote i n the text means that
trade-offs between agri cul ture and i nvestment can proceed. Thanks for
the ti p.
Accelerated Services Negotiations
We thought we mi ght have to hal t and review GATS but now i t's on
a fast track and devel opi ng countries under further pressure to submi t
offers. ESF you reminded us that "I n economi c terms, services are
si gni fi cantl y more i mportant than agri cul ture, and the ESF urges the
WTO members to be as fl exi bl e as P?ssi bl e i n agri cul ture negotiati ons.
The agreement on the Common Agri cul tural Pol i cy as wel l as the
reasonabl e Joint E U-US Negoti ati ng Proposal shoul d make it easi er to
achi eve posi ti ve progress at the tal ks i n Cancun and thereafter" so
we've tri ed to l ook l i ke we are doi ng somethi ng on agri culture wi thout
actual ly g ivi ng anythi ng away.
Wi l l keep you posted as thi ngs proceed. We regul arl y check your
posi ti ons on www. i nvestmentwatch�.
3. 4 African Parliamentarians Denounce
WO Manuplation
P RESS STATEMENT, For immediate rel ease: September 1 4, 2003.
A strongl y worded press statement
that was si gned by a number of
Afri can parl i amentarians who were at
Cancun. Whi l e European Parl i amen­
tarians (especially t he Greens) also
i ssued strong statements agai nst th eir
trade commi ssi ons mani pulat i ons,
I ndi an MPs were conspi cuous by thei r
We Afri can parl i amentarians denounce the on goi ng WTO
negotiations whi ch have been characterised by bl atant manipul ation
by devel oped countries in total di sregard of the i nterests and voices of
Afri can countries . The draft text currentl y under di scussi on is
unacceptabl e to us because it condemns mil li ons of Afri cans to
perpetual underdevel opment and abject poverty due to its fai l ure to
i ncorporate the maj or concerns of Africa.
We abhor the total l ack of transparency through a careful l y
orchestrated Green Room process desi gned to brow-beat our Mi nisters
i nto agreei ng to an outcome that secu res the interests of devel oped
countries whi l e total l y i gnoring the critical devel opment concerns of
ou r constituents.
I n the earl y hours of this morning, we witnessed our Mi nisters come
under i ntense pressure when they were dragged into an i mpromptu
mi ni - Green Room meeting starting at 1 . 00 am from which their
expert trade advi sers were barred. This meeti ng dragged on until
4. 00am thi s morni ng. We view thi s as an underhand tactic to coerce
our Mi nisters towards a pre-determi ned and desi red outcome that
secures the interests of the United States and the European Uni on
whi l e our cou ntries' i nterests remai n on the parki ng l ot.
As el ected representatives of our peopl e, we condemn the rol e of
the WTO Secretariat in faci l itati ng this undemocratic and non
transparent Green Room process. I n particul ar we are di smayed at the
unrepresentative nature of this process where the sel ecti on of
partici pati ng countri es i s both unclear and undefined and thus,
unacceptabl e to us.
We condemn the move by the United States and the European
Uni on to use the so cal l ed Si ngapore issues to di stract the attention of
thi s Mi nisteri al Conference away from making tangi bl e commitments
particul arl y on their trade di storti ng agri cul tural subsidies.
We urge our Mini sters here i n Cancun to remai n firm in thei r key
demands and not to join in any consensus on an outcome that wi l l
undermi ne the devel opment i nterests of our countri es.
¯ <
· , '
���´ ·
As representatives of our peopl e we shal l faithful l y and steadfastly
pl ay our oversi ght rol e here in Cancun and i f need be, we shal l ensure
that our Parl i aments do not ratify any outcome that is unacceptabl e to
our countries' i nterests and to our consti tuents.
For further information contact:
Sheila Kawamaro-Mishambi, Member of Parliament, East African legislotive Assembly -Tel . ºº8844ó/28
3. 5 Rej ect the Ministerial Text
Press Statement i ssued i n Cancun, Mexico dated 1 4 September 2003
The draft mi nisteri al decl aration text [JOB (03l 1 S0/rev, 2J i s al l
TAKE a nd no GIVE as far as devel oped countri es a re concerned. I t
renders the Doha pre-condi ti on of "expl i ci t deci si on by consensus
meani ngl ess and fl i es i n the face of the unambi g uous opposi ti on of a
l arge nu mber of devel opi ng countri es to commenci ng negoti ati ons on
the so-cal l ed Si ngapore i ssues. The ruse of a deci si on that the
Worki ng Group wi l l be convened i n a Speci al Sessi on "to el aborate
procedural and substanti ve modal i ti es" for negoti ati ons on i nvestment
wi l l decei ve none: It i s tantamount to assumi ng "an expl i ci t consensus"
which does not exist. The story i s si mi l ar i n regard to "Competi t i on
pol i cy". In regard to "Government Procurement" and "Trade
Faci l i tati on", the draft does not even
ttempt to conceal its i ntenti on: I t
strai ghtaway cal l s for negoti ati ons. Moreover, i t prej udges the
appl icabi l ity of Di spute Settl ement Procedures. And i n that it i mpl i es
more than what meets the eye. I t is onl y a thi n end of the wedge to
bri ng i n MFN and Nati onal treatment eventual ly.
I n rega rd to Agri culture, the text offers vi rtual l y a n a rray of empty
boxes which wi l l presumabl y be fi l l ed i n l ei surel y by EU and USA, as
they wish, i n Geneva. The "Bl ue Box" remai ns i n tact, wi th an
undefi ned i dea of "cappi ng i t", not knowi ng how hi gh the peg wi l l be
set to hang the cap on and how l ong it may take to bri ng i t a few
notches down . The "Green Box" vi rtual l y remai ns untouchabl e, wi th a
ri tual reference to mi ni mal di Sci pl i ne, if at al l . Devel opi ng countri es wi l l
have l ittle defensi ve mechani sm of protecti on l eft with them, except a
l onger ti me -schedul e for reduci ng tari ffs and admittedl y a restricted
l i st of Speci al Products. SSM (Special Safety Mechani sms) woul d be
avai l abl e to them onl y at the pri ce of al l owi ng i t to be retai ned by
devel oped countri es al so! As far as I ndi a is concerned, the right to
i mpose quantitative restricti ons on i mports i s essenti al to safeguard the
l ivel i hood of seven hundred mi l l i on peopl e dependent on agri cul ture
and al l i ed occupati ons. I ndi an Agri cul ture is faci ng an unprecedented
cri si s. And the draft decl arati on is total l y obl i vi ous of what i s absol utel y
essenti al to save it from di saster.
On the pri ority i ssues of "I mpl ementati on", the draft offers nothi ng
by way of pri ority. I ndeed i t rel egates those i ssues to the Geneva
processes as " busi ness -as- usual ". Even for S and D, the same
treatment i s appl i ed.
On the i ssue of Servi ces, the ai m of the negoti ati ons has been
reduced to "progressi vel y hi gher l evel s of l i beral i zati on" when GATS
i tsel f recogni zes the devel opment di mensi on expl i citly and
u nambi guousl y. There shoul d have been recogniti on that provi si on of
servi ces l i ke Educati on, Heal th, Water Supply, whi ch constitute the
basi c human ri ghts, can not be a l lowed to be commodi fi ed and,
therefore , such sectors shoul d be taken off from the negoti ati ng
process. There i s no awareness of thi s i mportant aspect i n the draf
decl arati on .
I t i s acknowl edged on a l l si des that there i s l ack of rel evant stati sti cs
that makes i t i mpossi bl e for devel opi ng countri es to assess the costs and
benefits of services l i beral i zati on i n vari ous sectors. There is a mandatory
provi si on i n GATS for maki ng such an assessment before starti ng on a
new round of l i beral i zation. However, thi s basi c shortcomi ng is i gnored
a nd the negoti ati ons a re sought to be pushed at ful l speed.
Al l i n al l , the draft decl arati on is a bl atant exercise i n sel l -servi ng
tactics of the trade maj ors. What i s worse, i t shows complete l ack of
sensi ti vity to the concerns of the vast maj ority of the peopl es of the
worl d. I t deserves to be rej ected outri ght.
Sd! /. S.PShukla ,Convener, IPCAWTO, New Delhi, Indio
Indian People's Campaign Againsl WTO
(A coalition of NGOs, Trode Unions and activists)
J 152 Sakel, New Delhi ! ¡ 00! / Indio. e mai i; theroos@vsnl .com
4. 0 Agriculture
4. 1 Biggest US Growers Pocket 7 1 % Farm Sops
9 September 2003, Reuters, Washi ngton
The bi ggest Ameri can farmers received 7 1 % of US farm su bsidi es
si nce 1 995, envi ronmental i sts sai d on Tuesday i n a report that coul d fuel
the fi ght i n Congress for ti ghter l i mits on. Farm supports. Activists say
mammoth payments to l arge operators gives them the cash to outbi d
thei r smal l er nei ghbors for l and and equi pment. The result i s hi gher
operati ng costs, they say, but no i mptovement i n farm i ncome.
Accordi ng to the Envi ronmental Worki ng Group (EWGL a Washi ngton
based activist organisation, the top 1 0% of US g rowers col lected an
average $278, 932 a year. Thei r share of payments steadi l y grew from
1 995, when the el ite g roups of farmers got 55 % of government
Bi l l i ons of dol l ars a re funnel ed to American grai n, cotton a nd
soyabean growers each year Farmers and ranchers al so receive federal
money to i dl e envi ronmental ly sensitive l and or to control manure run- off
from fi el ds a nd feedl ots.
Ri cel and Foods, a 9,000 member co-operative i n Arkansas, was the
l argest subsi dy reci pi ent i n 2002 wi th $ 1 1 0 mi l l i on.
The subsi dy l i st i ndi rectl y i ncl uded Bernard Ebbers, the former chi ef
executive of tel ephone company Worl d-Corn, which fi l ed the l argest
bankruptcy case in hi story l ast year. Ebber was part owner of Joshua
Ti mber, whi ch got $44J 61 si nce 1 995, mostl y f or l and conservati on.
Ebbers was not s hown as recei vi ng money di rectly. The EWG rel eased its
repor as the WO was meeti ng to discuss how to cut farm subsi di es.
Top programs in the United States, 1 995-2002"
Rank Program Number of Recipients
1 Crn Subsidie 1 ,365,459
2 Wheat Subsidies 1 , 1 44,87
3 Conseration Resere Prramme 627, 61 8
4 Soybean Subsidie 791 ,340
5 Cton Subsidies 204, 1 82
6 Rice Subsidies . 54,403
7 Sorghum Subsidie 51 2,005
8 livestock Subsidie 656,255
9 Dair Program Subsidie 142,860
1 0 Brley Subsidies 301 ,554
1 1 Panut Subsidi 67,063
1 2 Environmental Quality Incentives Program 8, 723
1 3 Tobacco SubSidie 342, 1 43
1 4 Sunflower Subsidies 40,688
1 5 Suar Subsidie 8,036
1 6 Oat Subsidies 570,596
1 7 Apple Subsidies 8,457
1 8 Wool Subsidies 6,87
1 9 Cnola Subsidies 14,51 3
20 Sheep Meat Subsidie 27, 704
Source: "Top programs i n the United States, !ºº5-2002´, ot hHp; , wv,w. ewq.oq,J'forrnlregion. php?fips
,<Retrieved on October ! 8"2003~
Sub5i dV ToIal
$1 7, 247, 966,489
$1 3,01 8, 1 73,430
$1 0,967,530,537
$1 0,663,566,87
$7, 795,799, 1 1 6
S3, 1 93,985, 1 71
$2,01 8,407,457
$ 1 ,4 1 1 ,386, 1 47
$1 ,265,735, 609
$52,457, 791
$377,346, 688
$1 83,445,543
$1 69¡437,769
$1 56, 1 92, 61 1
$1 51 ,361 ,01 0
* ,
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• Europear1 dairy
European& spending
i ndustr. This is
subsidy i ustto
the world's

4 . 2 Mr. Lee Kyu ng Hoe
La Jornada, (Mexi co), September 23, 2003 , by Lui s Hernandez Navarro
Transl ated from Spanish by
Gi sel a Sanchez, Paul i na Novo,
Ana Mateos and Peter Rosset
( Food Fi rst) . Ori gi nal Spani sh
versi on at: httpi/wwdo(dfirsi.')'9Irecia� n(w$i
Before Lee Kyung Hoe set out
to meet hi s death i n Cancu n, he
vi sited his wi fe's grave a nd
mowed hi s l awn. On September
9th, al ong wi th hi s Korean
compani ons, he carried a
symbol i c coffi n of the Worl d
Trade Organ izati on (WTO) al ong
the streets of "Vipers nest" (what
the name "Cancun" means i n the
Mayan l ang uage) , whi l e
del i veri ng hi s pol iti cal wi l l and
testament. The fol l owi ng day
Chusok day (the date that
commemorates the dead i n
Korea) -be cl i mbed the pol i ce
barri cade which separated the
multi tude from the pal ati al
meeti ng pl ace of the WTO,
addressed the crowd, and
pl unged a smal l Swiss Army knife
i nto his chest. He was weari ng a
si gn that sai d: "The WTO Ki l l s
Farmers. "
Mr. Lee chose hi s ti me to di e,
i n the same way that he chose hi s
missi on i n l ife. Accordi ng to hi s
ol der si ster, Lee Kyang, "the most
i mportant thi ngs for hi m were the
farmers, hi s parents, and hi s
three daughters". His i mmol ati on
was an exempl ar act: a dramati c
representati on of the fact that the
WTO actual l y murders peasants
around the worl d.
Al though sui ci des among
fami l y farmers around the worl d
are common, very few members
of the mass medi a seem to be
concerned about i t. More than a
thousand peasants committed
s ui ci de i n I ndi a between 1 998
and 1 999, f or exampl e. Many of
� ¯¤ �


them di d it by dri n ki ng pesti cides.
I n Engl and and Canada the
sui ci de rate a mong farmers is
twice the nati onal average. I n
Wal es on e farmer commits
sui ci de every week. In the U. S.
Midwest sui ci de i s t he fifth l argest
cause of death among farmers.
I n Chi na peasants are t he soci al
group wi th t he hi ghest sui ci de
rate. I n Austral i a the frequency of
farmer i mmol ati ons i s roughly
equal to the rate of acci dental
death. Mr. Lee had to take hi s
own l i fe so that the medi a woul d
recognize what i s happeni ng to
farmers in our worl d.
Sadl y hi s sacri fi ce has been
j udged i n general wi th a l ack of
understandi ng and consi derati on.
The wei ght of t he Christi an
tradi ti on has i mpeded some '
peopl e from seei ng hi s true
generosity. Just as rel i gi ous rites
began before our own i ndi vi dual
existence, and have a l ife of thei r
own, Mr. Lee's i mmol ati on i s an
act whi ch transcends a si mpl e
i ndi vi dual deci si on. By taki ng h is
own l ife, Mr. Lee has greatl y
strengthened the gl obal struggl e
for the survi val of a mi l l enari an
cul ture now threatened by free
trade pol i ci es : the cult ure of ri ce.
Korean cul ture i s based on
ri ce. I n Mesoameri ca we say we
a re the "peopl e of maize" - thus
we can say that Koreans a re the
" peopl e of ri ce. " Ri ce i s much
more tha n a commodity for the
rural peopl e of Korea: i t i s a n
a ncestral way of l ife. The Korean
word bap i s used both for
cooked rice as wel l as for food i n
general . I f you ask a Korean
chi l d what they see on the Moon,
they wi l l tel l you they see rabbits
mi l l i ng rice i n a gi ant mortar. A
l arge proporti on of the total
l abor force in Korea i s dedicated
to the cul ti vati on of ri ce. Because
of ri ce, rural vi l l ages are located
i n the mi dst of the very rice
paddi es where vi l l agers work.
Ri ce represents 52% of
agri cul tural producti on.
At the end of the 1 980s,
South Korea started to reduce
agri cul tural subsi di es and open
i ts markets to food i mpors,
t hanks to the agri cul tura l reforms
of the Uruguay Round [whi ch
l ater became the WTOl whi ch
put a cul ture more than a mi l l ion
years ol d i n grave danger. J ust
twelve years ago South Korea
had a populati on of 6. 6 mi l l i on
farmers. Today thi s number has
dropped to j ust 3. 6 mi l l i on.
Subsi di zed rice exports to Korea
from the U. S. are four ti mes
cheaper than the rice produced
by Korean farmers. Openi ng the
Korean market u nder the WTO
to Washi ngton's exports i s
provi ng t o be t he rui n of farmers
i n thi s Asi an country.
Mr. Lee's death must be seen
as a n attempt to defend hi s
cul ture. A fi nal attempt after
havi ng exhausted many other
paths. Earl i er be bui l t a
demonstration farm of twenty
hectares. He wanted to show
how farmers coul d survive,
i ncrease thei r producti on and
compete despite fal l i ng crop
pri ces. But i n 1 999 he l ost the
farm to forecl osure by the bank.
On t hi ry separate occasi ons he
protested wi th h unger strikes, and
even tri ed to take hi s l ife once
before as an act of protest
agai nst the WTO and the
Uruguay Round. He was el ected
to hi s state l egi sl ature three ti mes
as a farmer representative. Yet
none of these effors succeeded
i n defendi ng farmers from free
The meani ng of hi s
i mmol ati on i s this: i t i s an act to
stop the further sufferi ng of h i s
peopl e. As part of his l ast wi l l
and testament he l eft a
note sayi ng:
li l t i s better that a si ngl e person
sacri fi ces thei r l ife for ten peopl e,
than ten peopl e sacri fi ce t hei r
l ives for j ust one. "
As the phi l osopher Carl
Jaspers once wrote: "sui ci de is a
testament to the di gnity of men, it
is an expression of thei r
freedom". Mr. Lee's sacri fi ce
remi nds us that, i n ti mes of cri si s,
hope comes from those who,
through thei r exampl e of human
di gnity as part of a l arger
movement, become our uni que
rol e model s.

´ ³
· ~�r
- . ` ·
4. 3 Food and Agriculture Out of the WT O! I ndia Out
of the WT O! Say Karnataka Farmers
Bangal ore, September 1 0, 2003.
Excerpts from a report by Shal mal i Guttal ,
Focus on t he Global South .
Over 35, 000 farmers from across Karnataka State converged i n
Bangal ore--the state capital-today t o protest t he start of t he Fifth
Mi nisteri al Meeti ng of the World Trade Organi sati on (WTO) i n
Cancun, Mexi co. The ral l yi ng cry of t he farmers was, " Ei ther food and
agriculture must be removed from the WTO, or I ndi a must quit the
WTO. "
The ral l y was organised by the Karnataka State Farmers'
Associ ati on-Karnataka Rajya Ryota Sangha ( KRRS) and j oi ned by the
Dal it Sangharsh Samithi (DSS) and representatives from the Tami Nadu
Farmers' Associati on.
The mai n i ssues raised i n the ral l y were the i mpact of the WTO's
Agreement on Agri cul ture on smal l farmers i n I ndi a and the I ndi an
Government's fai l ure to protect i ts farmers from rui n and l iteral l y,
death. Burdened by crop fai l ures, l ow commodity prices and heavy
debt burdens, at l east 280 farmers have commi tted suicide i n
Karnataka from Apri l t o September. The enti re gatheri ng resolved that
food i s the ri ght of every person and
cannot be l eft to the whi ms or
di ctates of the market.
"Farmers' sui ci des and l i beral i sati on are di rectly rel ated," sai d
Professor M. D. Naj undaswamy, a founder member and current
President of the KRRS. " It al l started in 1 995. Before that we did not
have these mass sui cides in Karnataka and other states. The year
2000 was a record year in agri cultu re producti on si nce i ndependence
[ 1 947] , but there were suicides even i n that year. The reason for thi s is
li beral i sation, whi ch has resulted in fal l i ng pri ces, fall i ng i ncomes and
i ncreasi ng debts. " Accordi ng to Professor Nanj undaswamy, the KRRS
asked the Government of I ndi a to not sign the agreement establ i shi ng
the WTO as far back as 1 992. I n 1 994, KRRS l eaders met the
l eadershi p of al l pol iti cal parties a nd made the case for I ndia to pull
out of the WTO. 'jtal Bi hari Vaj payee was the l eader of the
opposition at that ti me and tol d me not worry so much and that I ndi a
coul d al ways withdraw from the WTO with six months notice" he said.
" Now we demand that I ndi a come out of the WTO, and in sol idarity
with other farmers' movements across the worl d, we demand that food
and agri cul ture be removed from the WTO. "
Farmers at the ral l y al so l i nked the i mpacts of trade l i beral isati on to
other sectors. I n the words of H. S. Masti from Bagal kot Di strict,
" I mported goods wi l l be sold at very l ow prices and our own
producers wi l l be made usel ess. I t i s not onl y smal l farmers, but al so
other producers i n our vi l l ages such as carpenters and gol dsmiths who
wi l l be affected by cheap i mports. I n our vi l l ages these producers
depend on the farmers for thei r l i vel i hood and wi l l al so di e if farmers
di e. If we cannot feed oursel ves, how can we feed others?" Mr. Masti
a l so spoke about the multi pl yi ng effects of agri cul ture i nputs and
genetical l y modified pl ant varieties t o l ocal food and envi ronmental
qual ity. " Because of i nputs l i ke Round-up, dangerous contami nants
are getti ng i nto our soi l a nd enti re food system. And no matter what
i nputs we use, our food sti l l does not meet i nternati onal standards. BT
corn and BT cotton have been i ntroduced i nto our envi ronment. Our
cattle cannot eat BT corn and ani mal s that feed i n the area where BT
cotton i s pl anted have di ed. We do not want such a system. "
The expandi ng ambit of t he WTO i n food and agri cul ture i s a
seri ous cause for concern among farmer movements i n other states as
wel l . Accordi ng to K. Sel l amut hu from the Tami l Nadu Farmers'
Associ ati on, oi l seeds (groundnut, sunfl ower, gi ngel l y and coconut)
currentl y fetch average prices from Rs. 35-50 per l itre. I n compl ia nce
wi th WTO requi rements, I ndi a has agreed to i mport pal m oi l from
Mal aysia, which wi l l sel l at Rs. 1 0 per l itre. Thi s wi l l devastate l ocal
oi l seed producers. Si mi l arl y, the current market pri ce of wheat is Rs. 1 3
per kg, but i n compl i ance with WTO requi rements, wheat from the United
States ( US) wi l l enter I ndi an markets at Rs. 4 per kg. "The style of
production i n the US is different from I ndi a. They farm l arge tracts of l and
with mechani sed technol ogy. I n I ndi a, we have zero agri cul ture subsi di es
a nd farmers are al ready committi ng sui ci de; the agri cul ture sector itsel f i s
commiti ng suici de. Seventy crores of peopl e [seven hundred mi l l ion] wi l l
be i mpacted by the WTO, al l di rectl y i n the agri cul ture sector. Arun Jaitl y
has al so said this, but whether the I ndi an Government wi l l uphol d thi s i n
Cancun or agree to quit the WTO is not certai n. Based on the results of
Cancun, we wi l l make further pl ans for future actions. " Mr. Sel l amuthu
added, "I n rural a reas, 80 out of 1 00 chi l dren sti l l go to school wi thout
chappal s [sl i ppers] . Bri ngi ng food and agri cul ture under the WTO's web
wi l l not work for devel opi ng countries l i ke I ndi a. /
The ral l y today was not an i sol ated or one-off event. Si nce 1 992,
farmers' movements i n I ndi a have staged unified protests agai nst the
Dunkel Draft and the establ i shment of the WTO, which marked the
i ncl usi on of agricul ture i nto the WTO. Si nce the l aunch of the current
negoti ati ons under the Doha work programme, farmer a nd fisher
movements across t he devel opi ng a nd devel oped worl d have j oi ned
hands and demanded that l i beral isation of the agri cultu re sector be
halted, and that governments pri oritise the needs of thei r smal l , fami l y­
based agri cul ture producers over the i nterests of mi ddl e-men, agri ­
busi ness companies a nd trans-nati onal food companies. A si gnificant
worry for peasant and a rtisanal fisher movements i n devel opi ng countries
i s that thei r governments wi l l trade agri cul ture away for concessi ons i n
other sectors such as servi ces, forei gn di rect i nvestment a nd i ndustry.
The farmers at the ral l y were wel l aware of I ndia' s negotiati ng positi on
i n t he Cancun Mi nisteri al meeti ng, but were not confi dent that t he I ndi an
Government wi l l meet t he chal l enge to protect them from t he onsl aught
of f urther trade l i bera l isati on . Women in the gatheri ng were fami l i ar wi th
the rul es of the GATT /WTO and what an expansi on of these rul es means
for thei r future. I n the words of one of the speakers, "Si nce
i ndependence, the farmers who have provided rice for thi s country are
commi tti ng sui ci de and our government is responsi bl e for thi s. Jaitl y i s
speaki ng some sense now i n t he WTO. But we have t o send a strong
message to hi m that he does not change his positi on in Cancun under
pressure from del egates from certai n other countri es. Vaj payee must get
the same message. "
4 D
5.0 Official Documents
5 . 1 Letter to Pierre Pettigrew from Arun Jaitely
and Rafidah Aziz

H. E. Mr. Pierre S. Pettigrew,
Minister for International Trade of Canada
ö Facilitator for the Singapore Issues
at the Cancun Ministerial Conference
Concun, 12 September 2003
Dear Mr. Petti grew,
On behalf of the del egati ons from Anti gua & Barbuda, Bangl adesh
( on behal f of the LDCs) , Barbados, Botswana, Bel i ze, Chi na, Cuba,
Domi nica, Egypt, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti , I ndi a, I ndonesi a, Jamai ca,
Kenya, Mal aysi a, Ni geri a, Phi l i ppi nes, St. Ki tts & Nevi s, St. Luci a, St.
Vi ncent & the Gre nadi nes, Sur i nam, Tanzani a, Tri ni dad & Tobago,
Uganda, Venezuel a, Zambi a and Zi mbabwe, we wi sh t o convey to you
thei r vi ews on the four new i ssues of ' Rel ati onshi p beteen Trade and
I nvest ment ' , ' I ntera ct i on between Trade an d Competi t i on Pol i cy',
' Transparency i n Government Procurement' and ' Trade Faci l i tati on' .
The above del egati ons have concerns about the i mpact of multi l ateral
rul es on the fou r new i ssues on thei r domesti c pol i ci es an d consi der that
they have yet to ful ly comprehend the i mpl i cati ons of havi ng WO rul es
on these i ssues. These concerns i ncl ude among others the i mpl i cati ons
on domestic pol i cies and avai l abi l i ty of resources. The i ssues are hi ghl y
techn i cal and compl ex and requi re much more anal ysi s.
These del egati ons al so consi der that many devel opi ng countri es do
not have the capacity to i mpl ement obl i gati ons ari si ng out of commi tments
such multi l ateral rul es wi l l entai l , and there were al so doubts on the
benefits of WTO frameworks on the new i ssues. A number of other
countri es, apar from the above, have al so conveyed si mi l ar vi ews at the
open ended meeti ng of the faci l i tati on group chai red by you. Hence, we
note that there is no expl i ci t consensus on the modal i ti es for negoti ati ons
as per the Doha mandate.
The above del egati ons al so have concerns about the process
t hrough whi ch these i ssues have been brought to thi s Mi ni steri al
wi thout any pri or di scussi on on the modal i ti es.
The above del egati ons are of the fi rm vi ew that there i s no opti on
to pursue other than the conti nuati on of the cl ari fi cati on process. We
therefore urge that the l anguage encl osed i n the Annex be
i ncorporoted i nto a ny revised tex of the draft Cancun Mi ni steri al
Decl arati on (JOB (03) 1 I SO/Rev. 1 ) i n l i eu of Paras 1 3 to 1 6.
Wi th our best wi shes,
You rs si ncerel y,
Dato' Seri Rafidah Aziz
Minister of International Trade ö Industry
Government of Malaysia
Paragraph 1 3:
Arun Jaitely
Minister for Commerce ö Industry
Government of India
We take note of the di scussi ons that have taken pl ace i n t he Worki ng
Group on t he Rel ati onshi p between Trade a nd I nvestment si nce the Fourth
Mi nisterial Conference. Given the a bsence of expl i ci t consensus, there is
no basi s for the commencement of negoti ati ons in thi s area. Accordi ngl y,
we deci de that furher cl ari fi cati on of the i ssues be u nde
raken in the
Worki ng Group. Any negoti ati ons i n thi s a rea shal l be u ndertaken onl y
on the basi s of expl i cit consensus at the Si xth Mi ni steri al Conference on
the modal iti es- of such negoti ati ons.
We recognize the needs of devel opi ng a nd l east-devel oped countri es
for enhanced support for techni cal assi stance and capacity bui l di ng i n
thi s area, i ncl udi ng pol i cy anal ysi s and devel opment s o that they may
better eval uate the i mpl i cati ons of cl oser mul ti l ateral cooperati on for
thei r devel opment pol i ci es and obj ectives, and human and i nstituti onal
devel opment. To thi s end, we shal l conti nue to work i n cooperati on wi th
other rel evant i ntergovernmental organi sati ons, i ncl udi ng UNCTAD, and
4 /
through appropri ate regi onal a nd bi l atera l chan nel s, t o p rovi de
strengthened a nd adequately resourced assi stance to respond to these
Paragraph 1 4:
We take note of the di scussi ons that have taken pl ace i n the Worki ng
Group on the I nteracti on between Trade a nd Competition Pol icy si nce
the Fou rth Mi ni ster i al Conferen ce . Gi ven t he a bs ence of expl i cit
consensus, there is no basi s for the commencement of negotiati ons i n
thi s area. Accordi ngly, we decide t hat further cl arificati on of t he i ssues
be u ndertaken i n the Worki ng Group. Any negotiati ons i n thi s area shal l
be undertaken only on t he basi s of expl icit consensus at the Sixth Mi nisterial
Conference on the modaliti es of such negotiati ons.
We recognize the needs of devel opi ng and least-devel oped countries
for enhanced support for techn ical assistance a nd capacity bui l di ng i n
thi s area, i ncl udi ng pol icy anal ysi s and devel opment s o that they may
better eval uate the i mplications of cl oser multi l ateral cooperati on for
thei r devel opment pol icies and obj ectives and human and i nstituti onal
devel opment. To thi s end we shal l conti nue to work i n cooperati on with
other relevant i ntergovernmental organisati ons, i ncl udi ng UNCTAD, a nd
t hrough app ropri ate regi onal a nd bi l atera l c h ann els, to p rovi de
strengthened and adequatel y resourced assistance to respond to these
Paragraph 1 5:
We take note of the di scussi ons that have taken pl ace i n the Worki ng
Group on Transparency i n Government P rocu rement si nce the Fourth
Mi nisteri al Conference. Given the absence of expl i cit consensus, there
is no basi s for the commencement of negotiations i n thi s area. Accordi ngly,
we decide that further cl arification of the i ssues be undertaken in the
Worki ng Group. Any negotiati ons shal l be l i mited to the transparency
aspects a nd therefore, wi l l not restrict the scope for countries to gi ve
preferences to domesti c suppl i es a nd suppl i ers. Any negotiati ons i n thi s
a rea shal l be u ndertaken only on the basi s of expl i cit consensus at the
Sixth Mi nisterial Conference on the modal ities of such negotiati ons.
We commi t oursel ves to conti nui ng adequate techni cal assi stance
and support for capacity bui l di ng duri ng the cl arification process .
Paragraph 1 6:
We take note of the di scussi ons that have taken pl ace on Trade Faci l itation
in the Counci l for Trade i n Goods si nce the Fourth Mi nisterial Conference.
Gi ven the a bs ence of expl i ci t consens us, t here i s no basi s for t he
commencement of negoti ati ons i n t hi s area. Accordi ngly, we decide that
further cl arificati on of the i ssues be u nderaken i n the Counci l for Trade i n
Goods. Any negotiations i n thi s area shal l be undertaken only on the basi s
of expl i cit consensus at the Sixth Mi nisterial Conference on the modal ities of
such negoti ati ons.
We commit ourselves to conti nui ng adequate techni cal assi stance and
support for capacity bui l di ng i n thi s area.
5. 2 I ndia's statement at the Heads of Delegati on meeting
Text of the Statement made by
Commerce Minister Arun Jaitley at the
Heads of Delegation meeting
respondi ng to the September 1 3 draft
Mr. Chai rman,
The I ndi an del egati on woul d l i ke to than k you and the faci l itators for
your eforts over the past few days. We are disappoi nted that the draft
text i gnores severa l concerns expressed by us and many devel opi ng
countries. I note that the pretence of devel opment di mensi ons of the
Doha Agenda has fi nal l y been discarded confi rmi ng the apprehensi on
expressed by me at the pl enary sessi on that thi s i s mere rhetori c.
At the outset I woul d l i ke to asso<iate mysel f wi th the statement made
by disti ngui shed Mi nister of Brazi l on behal f of G 2 1 on agri cult ure.
Not only are the distorti ons preval ent today bei ng perpetuated, but a
sl ew of new measures to i ncrease such distortions are bei ng proposed.
The conti nuati on of Bl ue Box i n an enl arged form without any promise
of si gnificant reductions and phasi ng out i n future is a case in point. To
gi ve comfort to major subsidizi ng countri es, distori ng provi si ons i n the
Amber Box are sought to be conti nued. Both these measures wi l l resul t
i n subsidizi ng exports of many items from these countries. I nstead of
negoti ati ng disci pl i nes on the Green Box, we have been reduced merel y
to reviewi ng the criteria of Green Box measures. Export subsidies a re
not only al l owed to conti nue but are sought to be i ncreased through a
new para l l el i sm process . We bel ieve that we a re compoundi ng the
distorti ons of the Uruguay Round by addi ng some more to them. The
hei ghtened ambi ti on on market access pi l l ar, whi ch i ronical l y provides
Speci al and Diferenti al treatment in favour of devel oped countries, is
utterly i ncomprehensi bl e and extremel y i nsensitive to the l arge number
of peopl e l ivi ng i n poverty i n these countri es. How can we expect
devel opi ng countries to reduce tarifs on a number of items to between
0% and 5% when the di stori ons agai nst whi ch such tariffs are supposed
to compensate are sought to be enhanced?
The Geneva process and t he consul tati ons i n the l ast t hree days have
cl earl y reveal ed that the cl arifi cati on process on Si ngapore i ssues has
not yet run i t s cou rse. I n the a bsence of cl arity on many el ements, a
maj ori ty of t he members h i p of t he WTO have rej ected l au nch of
negoti ati ons on these i ssues and sought a conti nuati on of the cl ari fi cati on
process. I gnori ng t hi s, Mr. Chai rman, you have proposed l aunch of
negot i at i ons i n t rade faci l i tat i on a nd trans pa rency i n gover nment
procurement . The sect i on on i nvest ment woul d seem to assume t hat
negoti ati ons woul d commence on the basi s of a General Counci l deci si on
on a date correspondi ng to fi nal i sati on of modal i ti es i n agri cu l ture a nd
NAMA. The text on competi ti on pol icy on t he other hand refers to possi bl e
negoti ati ons an obvi ous attempt to accommodate the i nterest of some
devel oped countri es. There i s no reference to fu rher expl i ci t consensus
ei ther i n the paragraphs on i nvestment or competiti on pol i cy. There i s
al so no expl i ci t consensus at present on any of the i ssues. I t woul d a ppear
that t he vi ews expressed by a l arge number of devel opi ng a nd l east
devel oped countri es on the need for further cl ari fi cati on of i ssues t hrough
a Mi ni steri al Conference document and t hrough a l etter addressed to
the faci l i tator by my Mal aysi an col l eague and me yesterday, have been
completel y i gnored. Thi s, Mr Chai rman, i s yet a nother i nstance of t he
del i berate negl ect of the views of a l arge number of devel opi ng countri es.
I t represents an attempt made to thrust the views of a few countri es on
many devel opi ng cou ntri es.
On NAMA, we want a speci fi c reference to the Chai rman' s formul a
for furher work. On sectoral i ni ti ati ves, we bel i eve t hat t he parti ci pati on
has to be vol untary. The present text i s, i n fact, an attempt to make the
sectoral i ni ti ative mandatory. To reflect l ess than ful l reci procity i n reducti on
commit ments, the end-tariff for devel opi ng countri es i n the sectoral
i niti atives must be hi gher tha n t hat of the devel oped countri es.
We are di sappoi nted that no t i me frame has been prescri bed for
resol vi ng the outstandi ng i mpl ementati on i ssues. We a re of the vi ew that
al l outstandi ng i ssues shoul d be addressed by a negot i ati ng group under
the TNC and thereafter deci si ons adopted by the General Counci l by
March 2004. On S&D I ssues, we strongl y support the Africa Groups
posi ti on that has been stated many ti mes i n t he past and t herefore do
not endorse t he present decisi on.
We are unabl e t o understand why on t he i ssue of cotton subsi di es
the draft text defl ects attenti on from the speci fi c course of acti on
suggested by Beni n a nd three other countri es by seeki ng to address
di stort i ons i n products other t han cotton.
Mr. Chai rman, we have to express our di sappoi ntment that the revised
text brought out by you has a rbi trari l y di s rega rded views and concerns
expressed by us. We have so for constructivel y engaged i n the enti re post
Doha process i n the hope that this is a development round. We wonder
now whether devel opment here refers to only further devel opment of the
devel oped countri es. Consequently, Mr. Chai rman we feel that thi s text
does not l end i tsel f to a ny meani ngful di al ogue. We sti l l bel i eve that t hi s
conference must be brought to a successful concl usi on. We hope that
ci rcumstances and envi ronment wi l l be created to enabl e us to parti ci pate
constructi vel y.
5. 3 The Cancun Ministerial Statement 1 4 September 2003
Trade ministers issue a statement
admi tting failure to arrive at
a consensus
1 4 September 2003
Fifth Session
Mi ni steri al Statement
WT/MI N(03)/W/24,
(03.494 1 )
Cancun, 1 0· 1 4 September
1 . As we concl ude our Fi fth Mi nisteri al Conference i n Cancun, we wou l d
l i ke to express our deep appreci ati on to the Government and peopl e of
Mexi co for the excel l ent organizati on and warm hospital ity we have
received in Cancun.
2. At thi s meeti ng we have welcomed Cambodi a and Nepal as t he fi rst
l east-devel oped countri es to accede to the WTO si nce its establ i shment.
3. Al l parti ci pants have worked hard a nd constructi vel y to make progress
as requ i red under t he Doha mandates . We have, i ndeed, made
consi derabl e progress. However, more work needs t o be done i n some
key a reas to enabl e us to proceed towa rds the concl usi on of the
negoti ati ons i n ful fi l ment of the commitments we took at Doha.
4. We therefore i nstruct our offici al s to conti nue worki ng on outstandi ng
i ssues wi th a renewed sense of u rgency and purpose and taki ng ful l y i nto
account al l the vi ews we have expressed i n thi s Conference. We ask the
Chai rman of the General Counci l , worki ng i n cl ose co-operati on wi th
the Di rector- General , to coordi nate thi s work and to convene a meeti ng
of t he Gen era l Cou n c i l at Sen i or Off i ci al s l evel n o l ate r t han
1 5 December 2003 to take the acti on necessary at that stage to enabl e
us to move towards a successful and ti mel y concl usi on of the negoti ati ons.
We shal l conti nue to exercise cl ose personal supervi si on of thi s process.
5. We wi l l bri ng wi th us i nto t hi s new phase al l t he val uabl e work that has
been done at t hi s Conference. I n those a reas where we have reached a
hi gh l evel of convergence on texts, we u ndertake to mai nt ai n t hi s
convergence whi l e worki ng for an acceptabl e overal l outcome.
6. Notwithstandi ng thi s setback, we reaffirm al l our Doha Decl arati ons
and Deci si ons and recommit oursel ves to worki ng to i mpl ement them
ful l y a nd fai thful ly.
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6. 0 Post Colla
6. 1 Via Campesina
I nternational farmer's movement
Afovimiento campesino internacional
Mouvement paysan international
Secretari a operative/operati ve secretari at: Apdo Postal 3628 Tegucigal pa, MDC Honduras
Tel & fax ¬ 504 235 99 1 5 E- mai l : vi acam@gbm. hn
We won i n Cancun l The WTO was derai led!
The Fifth Mi ni steri al Conference of the WTO ended on September
1 4th i n compl ete fai l ure. The WTO di d not even succeed i n i denti fi ng
the l ocati on of the next Mi ni steri al Conference. There was no
Decl arati on expressi ng any theme upon whi ch there was agreement
a nd there was no ti me to devel op consensus on a future agenda.
Thi s, together wi th the a nti ci pated wi thdrawa l of many countri es from
the South, created confusi on and chaos in the Mi nisteri al
Despite the mobi l izati on of strang presence of pol i ce and mi l itary
forces, on September 1 3th , rural organizati ons, youth, women and
other sectors succeeded I n teari ng down the barri cade i mposed by
the Mexi can Government a nd the WTO in attempts to make vi si bl e
our presence and our proposal s.
From September 8- 1 4th we engaged i n si gni fi cant days of struggle,
fi rst, wi thi n the framework of the Internati onal Peasant and I ndi genous
Forum, and later, i n di verse street demonstrati ons both i nsi de and
outsi de the conventi on center where the negotiators were
concentrated. The peasant and i ndi genous march of September 1
set the tone for the resi stance and struggl e of the fol l owi ng days.
On September 1 3th with pati ence and g reat courage, one hundred
women from all over the worl d di smantl ed pi ece by pi ece the
barri cade that i mpeded entry to the conventi on center. The Korean
peasants together wi th l arge part of the crowd j oi ned i n thi s acti on and
usi ng thi ck ropes we torn down the wall s. Thi s was a symbol of the
WTO that woul d soon col l apse i n Cancun . The thousands of pol i ce
and mi l itary stood there ready to quel l the protestors but no one was
i ntent on confronti ng them. Our non-vi ol ent confrontati on was wi th
WTO, not with the pol i ce and the mi l itary.
Demonstrators burned to efi gi es of the WTO a nd sat down. Then
white flowers were pl aced i n homage of our fri end Lee who gave hi s
l ife t o t he peopl e's struggl e, t he struggl e agai nst t he WTO, t he struggl e
for a more j ust and humane world. On September 1 4th the WTO had
coll apsed.
I n Cancun we encountered vari ous soci al sectors, among them
were the youth from di ferent pars of the worl d. When consi deri ng
forms of struggl e, these youth are characterized by di fferent l evel s of
radi cal i sm. For exampl e, among the most radical there i s the "Bl ack
Bl ock. " The Vi a Canipesi na, bei ng consistent wi th i ts demands,
opened spaces for di al ogue and convergence wi th the youth. Thi s
yi el ded extremel y posi ti ve results and thei r contri buti on was key to
achi evi ng our objective t hrough nonvi ol ent means. The youth have
expressed a desi re to conti nue worki ng wi th the Vi a Campesi na i n
future acti ons u nder the condi ti ons
menti oned above.
There is no dou bt that the sacri fi ce of ou r fri end Lee served to
an i mate, strengthen and radi cal ize the struggl e of those who were I n
Cancun an d those soci al acti vi sts engaged i n acti ons of mobili zati on
a round the worl d. Hi s courage a nd deal s wi l l l ive wi th us, we wi l l never
forget them. Lee contri buted enormousl y to our vi ctory and the
derai l i ng of the WTO.
The governments of the United States ( US) and the European Uni on
( EU) have demonstrated themsel ves total l y i ncapabl e of understandi ng
and taki ng i nto account the l egiti mate i nterests of peopl e. Thei r
a rrogant a nd i nflexi bl e manner, and bl ackmai l i ng practi ces, drove
countri es of the Thi rd Worl d to form a bl ock of oppositi on l ed by
Brazi " I ndi a and Chi na (G22) agai nst the US and the EU. The group
of governments from ACP countri es (Africa, Cari bbean and Pacific)
al so showed oppositi on . These i nitiatives contri buted to stop the
Mi nisterial . Via Cam pesi na wel comes this oppositi on- but does not
agree with the proposal s of the G22 regardi ng agri cul ture. I ncreasi ng
l i beral i zati on and market access do not resol ve probl ems of povery
and soci al excl usi on of mi l l ions of peopl e i n the worl d. On the
contrary thi s wi l l worsen the si tuati on.
The Presi dent of the European Uni on has i nvited the Vi a
Campesi na to a di al ogue on agri cul ture. We are consi deri ng thi s
proposal but we need to receive messages from the European Uni on
that express a real wi l l to change i ts Common Agricul ture Pol i cy a nd
current i nternati onal trade rul es.
I n Cancun the EU cl ai med they had al ready reduced expor
subsi di es. But i n fact, they had reduced farm pri ces and repl aced
export subsi di es with di rect payments whi ch are recoqni sed i n the
qreen box. The use of these di rect payments by the EU and i ncome
suppor schemes by t he US are a hidden way to support agro- i ndustry
through low farm prices and to faci l itate dumpi ng on i nternational
markets. The reaction of some i s to abol i sh subsi di es i n agri cul ture al l
together. However thi s woul d be a nother bl ow for peasant based
production . Publ i c s upport for sustai nabl e peasant-based agri cul ture,
di rected to those who need i t most, is a key demand i n the North and
the South. However is critical to stop overproduction in export
countries through suppl y management schemes and that countri es
must be abl e to protect themsel ves from l ow-priced i mports.
The col l apse of the WTO is a resul t of a profound cri si s withi n the
neol i beral model . I t i s urgent that we conti nue to strengthen our
movements , our al ternative proposal s. Creati ng an open transpa rent
and constructive di al ogue among ourselves is al l the more necessary
to advance, i n our strategi es of struggl e.
The WTO Ki l l s Farmers!
Take the WTO out of agricul ture, food and
Towards Peopl es' Food Sovereignty!
Gl obal ize the struggle, gl obal ize hope
I nternational Co-coordi nati ng Commi ssi on of Via Campesi na
Teguci gal pa, 23rd of September 2003
PRESS RE LEASE, 20 September 2003
devel opments at Cancun . The most i mportant devel opment is the re­
emergence of the sol i darity of the South. Early i ndicati ons were vi si bl e
i n Geneva i n the formati on of G2 1 , on agri cul ture, on the eve of the
Cancun meeti ng. The rol e pl ayed by Brazi l , Chi na, I ndi a and South
Africa in this respect deserves congratul ati ons. Not onl y because it
exposed the self-servi ng and unfai r proposal s of USA and EU on
agri cul tu re but al so because it hel ped bui l d the cross -conti nental
fou ndati on for the re-emergence of the sol i darity of the South whi ch
was witnessed i n Cancun.
The deadl ock at the Cancun meeti ng has, at l east for the ti me
bei ng, hel d back seri ous t hreats to our agri cul ture a nd our autonomy
of economi c pol i cy maki ng in regard to i nvestments and other related
a reas.
The revised proposal s on agri cul ture put forward at the Cancun
meeti ng were too soft on USA a nd EU i n regard to thei r commitments
to reduce domesti c support and export s ubsi di es; but the proposal s
requi red us t o reduce tariffs substantial l y and rapi dl y and i ndeed
asked for certai n tariff l i nes to be bound at nomi nal rates between 0
and 5 % . . Thi s i mpl ied general worseni ng of the distorti ons and
unfai rness i n t he worl d agri cul ture market. Even worse, thi s posed a
seri ous danger to our agri cul ture and to the survival of the mi l l i ons
dependent on agri cul ture for thei r l i vel i hood. That G- 2 1 rej ected
these proposal s is a matter of sati sfacti on. However, the revi sed
proposal s have exposed the i nherent weakness of the government
bel ief that tariff i nstrumental ity is adequate to protect thi s vital sector
from the onsl aught of the mul ti nati onal agri -busi nesses of USA and
EU. At Cancun, i t was p reci sel y t he tariff i nstrumental ity whi ch was
sought to be bl unted and made vi rtual l y usel ess for us. We, therefore,
reiterate that nothi ng short of cl ai mi ng and, asserti ng our ri ght to
i mpose quantitative restri cti ons on agri cul tural i mports can save our
agri cu lture and safeguard the l ivel i hood of the seventy percent of our
popul ation. Once agai n, we u rge t he Government t o i ncorporate thi s
el ement as the central part of thei r strategy on agri cul tural
negoti ati ons i n WTO.
The deadl ock i n Cancun has al so hel ped to keep the formal
negotiati ons on t he so-cal l ed Si ngapore i ssues at bay. And thi s has
been made possi bl e agai n because of the devel opi ng countries
i ncl udi ng the groups of ACP (Afri can, Cari bbean, Pacific) countries, the
Least Devel oped Countries, the Afri can Uni on and others l i ke I ndi a,
Brazi l and Mal aysi a hol di ng together and i nsi sti ng that cl arification
process must conti nue and that there was no consensus on starti ng the
negoti ati ons. Whi l e thi s i s wel come, i t must be remembered that the
l egacy of the Doha Decl arati on whereby the i nvestment, competiti on
pol i cy, government procurement and trade faci l i tati on were brought on
the agenda i s sti l l al ive. And there were reports that the government had
i ndi cated wi l l i ngness to accommodate the devel oped countries i n rega rd
to the commencement of negotiati ons on government procurement and
trade faci l itati on. We reiterate our opposition to mul ti l ateral di sci pl i nes
on al l the Si ngapore i ssues and urge the government not to agree to
any proposal for such disci pl i nes on these i ssues.
On the i ssue of Services, we note that at Cancun , there was an
attempt to reduce the ai m of the negoti ati ons si mpl y to "progressi vel y
hi gher l evel s of l i beral i zation", whereas General Agreement on Trade i n
Services (GATS) itsel f recognizes the devel opment di mensi on expl icitl y
and unambi guously. Al so, there was no recogn iti on that provi si on of
services l i ke Educati on, Heal th, Water Suppl y, whi ch constitute the basi c
huma n ri ghts, can not be al lowed to be commodified and, therefore,
such sectors shoul d be taken off from the negoti ati ng process. It is
acknowl edged on al l si des that there i s l ack of rel evant statistics that
makes it i mpossi ble for devel opi ng countries to assess the costs and
benefits of seri ces l i beral i zati on i n vari ous sectors. There i s a mandatory
provisi on in GATS for maki ng such a n assessment before starti ng on a
new round of l i beral izati on. However, thi s basi c shortcomi ng is i gnored
and the negotiations are sought to be pushed at ful l speed. We urge the
government to take a cl ear stand on these aspects when the process of
negotiati ons is resumed.
That the break-down of Cancun meeti ng has averted the i mmediate
di saster in the areas of agri cul ture and the Si ngapore i ssues i s a positive
devel opment. And al l those i n the camp of the South (whether in the
Conference hal l or outside) who brought i t about deserve
congratul ati ons. The task now is to ensure that the space gai ned at
Cancun is not al l owed to be frittered away i n the next three months or
so, l . e. by the ti me t he General Counci l of WTO i s schedul ed to meet i n
Geneva t o take t he process further. The danger is that trade maj ors wi l l
now resort t o t he bi l ateral processes to compl ete t he u nfi ni shed tasks of
Cancun . I mporant members of G-2 1 as wel l as the ACP and other
groupi ngs wi l l be s ubj ected to pressures and bl andi shments. And it i s
here that the sol i darity of the South wi l l be tested.

We u rge the government to fu rther strengthen its stand on
agri cult ure, t he Si ngapore i ssues and servi ces.

We u rge the government to rei nforce the sol i darity of the South i n
WTO an d resi st i ndivi dua l l y a nd col l ectively the onsl aught of the
devel oped countri es and thei r mul ti nati onal s.

We urge the government to defeat the possi bl e moves on the part
of the devel oped countri es to make deci si on- maki ng processes
u ndemocratic and nontransparent i n the name of i mprovi ng
operati onal effi ci ency of WTO.
6. 3 Statement From Caribbean Countries
PRESS RELEASE, September 1 4, 2003
Today the Fifth Mi ni steri al Conference of the Worl d Trade
Organizati on i n Cancun, Mexico, at whi ch al l Cari bbean Countri es
were present, ended without agreement on the many key i ssues. Bi l l ed
as a Conference to advance the Doha Devel opment Round of Trade
Negoti ati ons, t he Conference col l apsed on t he key i ssues of
devel opi ng countri es such as agri cul ture, non-agri cul tural market
access, smal l economi es and speci al and differenti al treatment, as
wel l as on t he so-coi l ed Si ngapore i ssues; i nvestment, government
procurement, competiti on pol icy and trade faci l i tati on measures.
The November 2001 Doha Mi nisteri al Conference had agreed that
these i ssues woul d onl y be pursued afer expl i ci t consensus on
modal i ti es for thei r negoti ati on . No such consensus was reached.
Cari bbean countri es and other Members of the African, Cari bbean
and Paci fi c countri es, the LDCs g roup, and the African Uni on strongl y
opposed the l aunch of negotiati ons on the Si ngapore I ssues.
Cari bbean countri es, whose key i nterests are i n the a reas of smal l
economi es, speci al and differenti al treatment, servi ces, agri cul ture
a nd non-agri cul tural market access, were strong i n thei r determi nati on
to have these devel opment i ssues given pri ority consi derati on,
consistent with the Doha Decl arati on a nd Deci si ons for a
Devel opment Round. There was l ittle or no progress i n these i ssues .
I n bri ngi ng the Conference to a cl ose, WTO Mi ni sters i nstructed
thei r offi ci al s to conti nue worki ng on the outstandi ng i ssues in Geneva
with a renewed sense of u rgency and commitment, taki ng i nto
account al l the vi ews expressed i n Cancun. To t hi s end they i nstructed
the General Counci l to convene at Seni or Offi ci al s level no l ater tha n
December 1 5, 2003, to take the acti on necessar at that stage to
move the process forward to a successful a nd ti mel y concl usi on .
Cari bbean del egati ons share the general sense of di sappoi ntment
at the l i mited achi evements of the Conference i n spite of the best
effors of the hosts. Our Ambassadors and regi onal negoti ators must
therefore wi th resolve conti nue to engage thei r counte4parts i n
Geneva and mai ntai n thei r conti nui ng active rol e i n the process to
advance the devel opment i nterests of the regi on.
Fi nal l y, t he Cari bbean del egati on woul d l i ke to express thei r
appreci ati on for the eforts of the Chai r a nd for the hospi tal ity
extended by the Government a nd peopl e of Mexico.
6. 4 Africans In The Forefront I n Cancun
Africa peopl es' i mpact at t he WTO Mi ni steri al i n Cancun was out
of al l propori on to the numbers present. Whi l e we were l acki ng i n
numbers of acti vists who coul d get to Mexi co, the Afri can Peopl es
Caucus made up for thi s wi th our pol i ti cal convicti ons about our needs
and ai ms, our pol i ti cal experi ence i n mass acti ons, our strategi c sense
and tactical ski l l s, a nd the dynami sm of our pol i ti cal expressi on.
Thi s was the wi despread opi ni on amongst the other organi sati ons
from al l over the worl d a l so present i n Cancun . I n fact our i mpact was
so dramati c that many were amazed to l earn that we were onl y about
a dozen i n the core group, although there were other Afri cans ' on the
i nsi de' (accredited NGOs monitori ng the positi ons of Afri can
governments i n the WTO processes) who j oi ned us at strategi c poi nts
a nd i n our strategi c pl an ni ng meeti ngs.
On the one hand, we made powerf ul presentati ons i n our meeti ng
on "Gl oba 1 i sati on as Recol oni sation", a nd testi monies from Afri can
acti vi sts "Defendi ng our Servi ces and Our Ri ghts" as the core of our
"Voi ces from Africa" programme i n the famous Hotel Margaritas i n the
heart of downtown Cancun whi ch was a focus of many of the NGO
activi ti es I on the outsi de' .
We al so contri buted to meeti ngs set up by other organi sati ons from
a round the worl d, such as the ver bi g meeti ng hosted by the
i nternati onal network "Ou r World i s Not for Sal e". Thi s exposed on the
many bi l ateral free trade agreements bei ng pursued by the powers,
even as they are engaged in so-cal l ed mul ti l ateral negoti ati ons wi thi n

the WO framework. I n thi s regard, al ready evi dent for us i n Afri ca i s
Washi ngton' s so-cal l ed Afri can Growth and Opporun iti es Act (AGOA)
and the EU' s proposed regi onal free trade agreements i n Africa
through Cotonou. And i n Southern Africa we are now faced with the
US-SACU ( South African) free trade negoti ati ons al ready u nderway.
Our counter-struggl e is al ready on i n thi s regard ! !
We al so created our own dra mati c demonstrati on under our
ban ner decl ari ng ''frican Peopl es - Resi sti ng the WTO", weari ng our
disti ncti ve and much admi red bl ack and green T-shi rts procl ai mi ng
''frica is Not for Sal e Africa no es a la Venta". We carried our
dozens of hand- made pl acards decl ari ng " Peopl e not Profits ! " . . . .
"Government! Compani es! We say Ou r Servi ces are Not for Sal e! " . . . .
" Free Trade Destroys our Li vel i hoods! "land and Food Security for Al l
- Down wi th the WTO! " . . . . "Fi shers and landl ess Peopl e Say No to
the WTOI "No to free Trade - No to GMOs! # and many more.
Thi s march u p to the i nfa mous barri cade cuti ng us off from the
WTO area, atracted the attent
on of medi a from al l over the world
and got ful l repori ng al1d vi sual coverage i n many newspapers and on
i nternati onal tel evi si on reports. We wi l l share these i mages when we
get back home.
More i mportantl y, our Afri can demonstrati on received support from
other organi sati ons from around the world and everyone wanted to
wea r our wonderful bl ack a nd green T-shi rts. We made such an
i mpact that when i t came to the massi ve march ''gai nst Gl obal i sati on
a nd Mi l itari sati on", on Saturday 1 3th, the common cal l was for "the
Afri cans" to go to the front.
I n fact i t was our African women who were at the ver face of the
ten foot steel a nd concrete barri cade bl ocki ng us off from the
conference centre ten ki l ometers away. And i t was our Afri can women
who wi el ded the huge bol t cutters to cut though the wi re fence, backed
u p by ran ks of other women from around the worl d. And behi nd them
were the wel l - organi sed Koreans wi th strong ropes whi ch were pushed
through the breaks i n the fence to pul l i t down. And as that symbol i c
act was achi eved and a roar of tri umph swel l ed up from the huge
crowd, t he fi rst peopl e t hrough t he fence were Afri can women shouti ng
"Down wi th the WTO ! Africa i s not for Sal e!
Once that t he symbol i c vi ctory had been achi eved t he pol iti cal ly
experi enced and wel l -organi sed forces l eadi ng the march, especi al l y
the peasant and i ndi genous organi sati ons from Mexi co and around
the worl d, di d not seek or pravoke confrontati ons wi th the ran ks of
Mexi can pol i ce on the other si de. They encouraged al l the peopl e
present to si t down, send out our pol i ti cal messages, and bl ock off the
enti re a rea ta prevent agents provocateurs from gi vi ng the i mpressi on
that i t was vi ol ence that was bei ng ai med at.
The march was a powerful expressi on not only of excel l ent
argani sati on and pl anni ng but of our abi l ity to bui l d unity in acti on,
and t he pol i ti cal wi sdom and ski l l s that have been bui l t u p i n the
gl obal peopl es movement duri ng many experiences al l over the worl d
in recent years.
And we are i mmensel y proud that our African peopl e's
organi sati ons pl ayed a central rol e i n the events i n Cancun. Together
wi th our wel come of the defeat of the pl ans of the powerful countri es
i n the WTO meeti ng, we a l so note that Afri can governments hel d firm
to thei r posi ti ons. Some of them, i ncl udi ng the South Afri can
government, even remarked with pri de that 'thei r' peopl es
organi sations had pl ayed such a dynamic rol e on the outsi de.
Let us hol d our governments to thi s recogn iti on of our peopl e' s
organisations and achi evements. Let us ensure that they engage wi th
us and l i sten to our demands and advi ce when we al l get back hame!
Let us ensure that we bui l d on the vi ctory i n Cancun i n the days ahead.
A we al ways say "A Luta Conti nua ! !
6. 5 Cancun Conclave: A New Sunrise
For Developing Countri es
By Benny Kuruvi l l a, Peopl es Reporter Vol 1 6, No: 1 8, Mumbai (September
25-0ctober 1 0 2003)
As ti red trade del egates and j ubi l ant protestors l ef the Mexi can
resort of Cancun after the col l apse of the Worl d Trade Organi sati ons
5th mi nisteri al conference (September 1 0- 1 4, 2003) i t si gnal ed an
i mportant shi f i n power equati ons i n the 1 48 member organi sation.
When a massi ve groupi ng of Afri can, Asi an, Cari bbean and Least
devel oped countri es refused to kowtow the di ktats of the E U
( European Uni on) a n d the US, l eadi ng to the breakdown of tal ks on
the l ast day, the si gni fi cance of thi s combi ned act of defi ance was not
l ost to many. The Worl d Bank chi ef James Wolfensohn sai d the
Cancun al l i ance marked the creati on of a new paradi gm i n gl obal
fi nanci al rel ati ons for the 2 1 century" that empowers devel opi ng
countri es agai nst the ri ch i ndustri al nati ons. Devel opi ng countri es,
compri si ng two thi rds of the organi sati ons membershi p, l ed the show
at Cancun, putti ng asi de si gn ificant di fferences to form strong
al l i ances (whi ch to the surpri se of many stood the test of ti me and
pressure) a nd submi ted wel l researched a nd techn i cal ly sound
negoti ati ng proposal s.
From Doha to Cancun:
Trade mi ni sters make u p the hi ghest deci si on maki ng body of the
WTO a nd a re expected to meet at l east once every two years; Cancun
was the fi fh i n t he seri es of mi nisterial meeti ngs t hat began wi t h the
1 996 Si ngapore mi ni steri al . Afer the fai l ure of the 1 999 Seatl e
mi ni steri al , the 2001 Doha mi ni steri al succeeded i n l aunchi ng an
ambi ti ous work programme cal l ed the Doha Devel opment Agenda.
Though devel opi ng countri es were rel uctant t o l aunch a new round of
compl ex negoti ati ons, Robert Zoel l i ck, the United States Trade
Representative and the European Trade Commi ssi oner Pascal Lamy
s uccessful l y used the sympathy wave post the September 2001 terrorist
attacks to successful l y argue that the fai l ure to advance trade
negoti ati ons i n Doha woul d be a boost to terrori sm. Doha mandated
key negoti ati ons on Agri cul ture, Servi ces and TRI PS (Agreement on
Trade related aspects of I ntel lectual Property Ri ghts)
Cancun was to mark an i mportant stop on the road to compl eti ng
the ambi ti ous Doha rou nd of negoti ati ons, whi ch supposedl y put ·
devel opment at the core of its agenda. But i n the path from Doha to
Cancun, negoti ators i n Geneva (at the WTO headquarters) mi ssed
every maj or deadl i ne. By fai l i ng to make adequate progress on i ssues
the devel opi ng countries bel ieved constituted a genui ne devel opment
round what was O routi ne fuel l i ng stati on became a l andmi ne.
The Hypocri sy:
The question of agri cul tural reform was the most contenti ous i ssue
at Cancun . I t i s now wel l documented that whi l e devel opi ng countri es
made substanti ve l i beral isati on commi tments, farm subsi di es i n the EU
and the US have actual ly i ncreased si nce the WTO's Agreement on
Agricul ture came i nto efect. Economi sts at t he UNDP ( United Nati ons
Devel opment Programme) recentl y estimated that whi l e the EU
provi des a dai ly subsi dy of US $ 2. 7 per cow, half of I ndia' s
popul ati on l ive on l ess than $ 2 a day. Thi s hypocrisy al l ows countries
l i ke the EU to both protect its farm sector and dump its s ubsi di sed
products i n devel opi ng country markets. Not surpri si ngl y the removal
of quantitative restricti ons i n Apri l 2001 (fol l owi ng WTO sti pul ati ons) i n
agri cultural commodities has been devastati ng for I ndi a' s smal l
farmers . Before Cancun, the European Union and the United States
set u p a common negotiati ng framework to revive the stal l ed tal ks on
agri cult ural l i beral i sati on. Devel opi ng countries i mmediatel y
responded by cri ti qui ng it as fai l i ng on al l three counts of reduci ng
domestic support, i mprovi ng market access for devel opi ng countries
a nd phasi ng out export subsi di es. Further they formed the G-22, whi ch
compri sed severo I l eadi ng devel opi ng countri es such as Chi na, I ndi a,
Brazi l , Argenti na a nd South Africa, and submitted a counter proposal
for agricu l turol reform as opposed to the paper submitted by the EU
and the US.
Addressi ng a packed press conference on the openi ng day of the
mi ni steri al Brazi l i an mi ni ster Cel so Amori m speaki ng on behal f of the
group, emphasi sed that thei r cause was a j ust one as they represented
50% of the worl d' s popul ati on and over 65% of farmers.
A g roup of four Western and Central Afri can countries ( Burki no
Faso, Chad, Beni n and Mal i ) al so submitted a wel l -crafed j oi nt
i nitiative on Cotton cal l i ng for the total el i mi nati on of cotton subsi di es
by devel oped cou ntri es and fi nanci al compensati on for l ost i ncome
whi l e the subsi di es were bei ng phased out. Cotton growers are among
the most heavi l y subsi di sed farmers i n the US, recei vi ng more than $3
bi l l i on a year i n subsidi es, accordi ng to the World Bank.
Si ngapore i ssues:
Another potenti al battle l oomed i n Cancun over what i s termed a s
the four Si ngapore i ssues. Si nce the 1 996 Si ngapore mi nisteri al the E U
and other devel oped countries have been tryi ng to create new WTO
rul es on: I nvestment, Competiti on pol i cy, Government procurement
and trade faci l itati on. Si nce then devel opi ng countries have
consistentl y opposed the creati on of a new set of compl ex agreements
on these i ssues. At the 2001 Doha mi nisteri al I ndi a's then Commerce
Mi nister Murasol i Maran was wi del y credited with ensuri ng that any
deci si on woul d need to be taken by 'expl i cit consensus' from al l
member countries of the WTO at the Cancun mi ni steri al . On the
second day of the conference, i n a defi ant show of strength, a group
of 70 devel opi ng countries hel d a press conference reiterati ng thei r
opposi ti on to the l aunch of a new round of negoti ati ons on the
Si ngapore i ssues. The Mal aysi an Mi ni ster for I nternati onal Trade and
I ndustry Rafi dah Ai z and I ndi an Commerce Mi nister Arun Jaitl ey even
formal l y presented a l etter on behal f of these countries to the faci l itator
of the worki ng group on Si ngapore i ssues stati ng that the darifi catory
process i n Geneva shoul d conti nue,
Fundamental l y fl awed:
It was expected that the united and professi onal approach of the
devel opi ng countries woul d be refl ected i n the draft, whi ch woul d form
the basi s for the Cancun Mi nisteri al decl arati on, But the document
rel eased on 1 3 September by the faci l itators of the five worki ng groups
was fundamental ly fl awed; it showed that the views expressed by the
EU and US on vi rtual l y al l i ssues prevai l ed.
On agri cultural reform, the draft through a means of cyni cal l egal
j uggl ery al l owed t he EU and t he US to conti nue wi th thei r domesti c
subsi di es by si mpl y shifti ng them from the trade di storti ng secti on to
the non- trade-distorti ng one. On the i ssue of market access the
devel opi ng countries were subj ected to even more tariff reducti ons.
On the cruci al i ssue of el i mi nati on of export subsi di es provi ded by
devel oped countries there was no date menti oned for thei r el i mi nati on,
Addressi ng t he press i mmedi atel y after hi s formal response t o the draft
at the Heads of Del egati on meeti ng Mr. Arun Jai tl ey di d not h i de hi s
di sappoi ntment/' I nstead of bei ng sensitive t o the concerns of
devel opi ng a nd l east devel oped countries t hi s draft i ndicates that the
speci al and diferenti al treatment i n favour of devel oped countri es has
been al l owed to conti nue",
Even the cotton i ni tiati ve, whi ch received overwhel mi ng support
from both devel oped and devel opi ng countries, was i gnored.
Fi nal Col l apse:
The most bitterly contested i nseri on i n the new draft was the
proposal to l aunch negoti ati ons on three of the Si ngapore i ssues, i n
parti cul ar on the hi ghl y controversi al i ssue of I nvestment.
Mi nisters then entered i nto the fi nal l ap of round the cl ock
negoti ati ons i n a n attempt to fi nd enough common ground to avert
total fai l ure. But Asi an and African countries were determi ned to hol d
onto thei r pri nci pl ed posi ti ons and the meeti ng fi nal ly col l apsed duri ng
the fi nal sessi on on 1 4 September when t he EU and t he US conti n ued
to push a draft that di d not gi ve anythi ng meani ngful on agri cul ture
but mandated negoti ati ons on three of the Si ngapore i ssues.
Speaki ng to the press afer the col l apse Ugandan del egate Yash
Tandon was furi ous, liThe ass umpti on made by the EU and the US was
that wi thi n about t wo or three days they can j ust carr out rapi d
deci si ons for everybody. They wanted a text passed that was
profoundl y bi ased - The process of arrivi ng at thi s draft has been
opaque and undemocratic - thi s text i s unacceptabl e to us because i t
condemns mi l l ions of Afri cans to perpetual u nderdevel opment and
abject povery".
"We are i ndeed di sappoi nted wi th t hi s resul t. The Cari bbean
countries came u nited to Cancun wi th a ver positive agenda to get a
fai r deal for our farmers. Nothi ng was offered to us. Nearl y 70
countries sai d they were unwi l l i ng to l aunch negoti ati ons on the
Si ngapore i ssues i . e. there was no expl i ci t consensus. Despite thi s, the
draf we were di scussi ng t hi s morni ng mandated negatiati ons on three
of them. I cannot understand how i ssues not on the agenda can take
precedence. The way the WO i s managed l eaves a l ot to be
desi red, " sai d Mi nister George of Sai nt Luci a speaki ng on behal f of
the Cari bbean countri es.
A victory for the devel opi ng worl d:
Addressi ng the press the I ndi an Commerce mi ni ster Arun Jai tl ey
sai d, Success cannot be j udged on the abi l ity of getti ng or not
geti ng a decl arati on. The fact that the mi nisterial di d not pass a
statement that di d not enj oy a consensus is i ndeed a victor for the
devel opi ng worl d.
The draf text cl early di d not reflect t he aspi rati ons of the devel opi ng
and LDCs".
I nstead of the Mi nisteri al decl arati on that woul d have mandated a
work programme a nd set deadl i nes for compl eti on of negoti ati ons the
mi ni sters i ssued a one-page statement admitti ng fai l ure and thei r
resolve to go back to Geneva and try to i ron aut differences.
A watershed :
Success at Cancun woul d have meant a mockery of both
devel opi ng countries and the so-cal l ed Doha devel opment agenda.
Cancun's bl ockade does not mean the end of the road either for the
WTO or for the Doha round or for the domi nant neo- l i beral paradi gm
that governs i nternati onal trade today. But Cancu n wi l l remai n a
watershed i n the hi story of the WTO; it marks a new dynami c to the
organ i sati on, standi ng as a useful remi nder to the EU and the US that
the vi ews of devel opi ng countri es can no l onger be i gnored.
6 . 6 Crisis of the WTO System: Chance for the
Underpri vileged and Marginal i zed?
Brita Neuhol d and Mari a Karadeni zl i , WI DE-/I GTN Europe
The 5th WTO Mi ni steri al Conference dramatical l y col l apsed i n the
afternoon of September 1 4th after unbri dgeabl e di sagreement between
Northern and Southern countries on the so-cal l ed Si ngapore i ssues
and on agri culture. The coal i ti ons of devel opi ng countries whi ch had
been bui l t up duri ng the conference stood fi rm unti l the end - despite
heavy pressure exerted upon them by the ri ch nati ons, above al l the
United States and the Eurapean Union. The devel opi ng countries
pronounced a cl ear NO to the authori tari an procedures of the W
model l ed after a bsol ute monarchi es of former centuri es and the
gl obal i sati on of an economi c model whi ch favours excl usi vel y the ri ch
nati ons a nd Transnati onal Corporati ons. I n rare unani mi ty they
rej ected the WTO Draft Mi ni steri al Text whi ch in the most provocative
manner i gnored the resol ve of more than 70 countri es not to enter
i nto negotiati ons on the Si ngapore I ssues and whi ch al so overl ooked
the cl ear and detai l ed proposal s of the "Group of 20+," a n al l i ance
under the l eadershi p of Brazi l , I ndi a, Chi na and South Afri ca i n the
a rea of agri cul ture and of the Afri can, Cari bbean and Pacific (ACP)
g roup as wel l as of West Afri can Least Devel oped Countries and of
other groups on spedfic i ssues.
I ndignati on and Resistance
The Mi nisteri al text whi ch, al l i n al l , was strong on corporate­
ori ented economi c growth and extremel y weak on devel opment and
envi ronmental sustai na bi l ity, i nfuriated Southern countries a nd sparked
statements of rare, al most bl unt di rectness: For exampl e the I ndi an
Del egate referred t o t he mid-term review of t he Doha Devel opment
Agenda as a "further devel opment of the devel oped countri es. "
One of the most a rt i cul ate comments came from the
representative of Anti gua and Barbuda who stated: "Were we to
accept thi s document, we woul d deserve our peopl e's condemnati on
for we woul d not onl y have gai ned no rel i ef for them, but we woul d
have condemned them to a l ife of perpetual underdevel opment. "
Thi s remark set the stage for fierce opposi ti on from Southern
countries whi ch were strongl y supported by NGOs and other ci vi l
soci ety groups. I n particul ar, the proposed procedure on the Si ngapore
i ssues was seen as a provocati on, especi al l y by those Southern
del egates who had been i nvol ved i n the WTO worki ng group on New
I ssues and coul d not recognise thei r posi ti ons i n the fi nal draft. Thus,
the conference cl i mate was at boi l i ng poi nt when Green Room tal ks
for approxi matel y 30 countries opened i n the morni ng of September
1 4th, the focus s hifti ng i mmedi atel y to the Si ngapore
i ssues item.
Resistance by Kenya, whi ch s poke on behal f of the ACP countri es,
and by I ndi a was so fierce wal kout by del egates from devel opi ng
countries seemed possi bl e as the Kenyan del egate sai d that he woul d
no l onger take part i n t he sessi on - that i t soon became obvi ous that
no consensus coul d be reached. Deci di ng that negoti ati ons had
reached a deadl ock whi ch appeared i nsurmountabl e, Mexi can Forei gn
Mi nister Derbez deci ded t o cl ose t he conference before tal ks on
agri cul ture had even been opened.
New Power Structures and Memories
from the Past
Despite thei r fears that, after thi s breakdown, the Doha
Devel opment Agenda mi g ht even be more diffi cul t to real i se, Southern
countries fel t that they had achieved unity and had confronted the
trade pol i ci es of powerful nati ons and questioned the undemocrati c
WTO structure. Thi s event, in fact, recal l s memories of the 1 970s
when Thi rd Worl d countries stood up agai nst the North i n thei r
struggl e for a j ust New I nternati onal Economic Order a nd for the ri ght
to devel opment. At that ti me, they fought for thei r demands at
UNCTAD conferences whi ch then enj oyed the same publ ic atenti on
and medi a i nterest as WTO conferences today. Mr. Cel so Amori m, the
Forei gn Mi nister of Brazi l l '¯' a nd speaker of t he Group of 20+,
expressed t he feel i ngs of many when he sai d that "We wal k away from
the process stronger than we entered i tl " Hi s words of gratitude to the
NGOs to whi ch, accordi ng to hi m, the worl d shoul d l isten, were
shared and supported by many other Southern del egates. They fel t that
the sol i darity expressed by the NGO community and by civi l SOCi ety i n
general i n numerous decl arations, briefi ng papers, press rel eases,
meeti ngs, i mpressi ve demonstrati ons, and personal encouragement,
had been a strong shi el d agai nst the cal l ous, and someti mes even
contemptuous, behavi our by the representatives of ri ch countri es.
The reacti on of the European Uni on which, throughout the
negoti ati ons, had not shown much understandi ng of the demands and
needs of the devel opi ng worl d, and i nstead had addressed bl unt
threats to many of these countries- i n parti cul ar to the ACP Group­
was one of shock and surpri se. I t termed t he outcome a " bi g mi stake"
made by devel opi ng countri es. There was no anal ysi s whatsoever of
the fact that i t was partly because of EU persistence in pursui ng the
i niti ati on of negoti ati ons on the Si ngapore i ssues that the negoti ati ons
had col l apsed. Trade Commi ssi oner Pascal Lamy, who coul d hardl y
conceal h is anger, heavi l y cri ti ci sed the WTO as "medieval " and its
pri nci pl e of consensus as "outdated. " But there were al so European
del egates, who hel d t he undemocratic procedures of the WTO



responsi bl e for the di saster. For i nstance, Bel gi um advocated for a
stronger rol e for UNCTAD i n i nternati onal trade pol i ci es of the future.
Thi s i s on i ndi cati on of the di vergence of vi ews of EU member states i n
di fferent areas, whi ch are normal l y wel l hi dden behi nd the col l ective
EC posi ti on.
Civi l Society on the move
I nternational NGOs and networks formed a strong al l i ance
among themsel ves, co-ordi nati ng thei r acti ons and i ssui ng i n-depth
i nformati on on thei r activiti es and on the topi cs and i ssues at stoke.
Promi nentl y among them fi gured Our Worl d i s not for Sal e (OWI NFS) ,
Thi rd World Network (TWN) , I nternati onal Gender and Trade Network
( l GTN) , Women Envi ronment Devel opment Organi sati on (WE DO) ,
Associ ati on on Women's Ri ghts i n Devel opment (AWI D) , Women's
Edge Coal i ti on, Southern and Eastern African Trade, I nformati on and
Negoti ati on (SEATI NI ) , South Asi an Ci vi l Soci ety Network i n
I nternati onal Trade (SACSNI TI ) , I nternati onal Centre for Trade and
Sustai nabl e Devel opment ( I CTSDL Centre of Research on
Mul ti nati onal Corporati ons (SOMO) , Food Fi rst I nformati on and
Acti on Network ( FI AN) , I nternati onal Center for Cultural Divers ity
( l CCD) , Green Peace, World Wi l dl ife Fund (WWF) , Friends of the
Earth, Publ i c Ci ti zen, Acti on Ai d, I nternati onal Center for Human
Ri ghts and Democratic Devel opment ( I CHRDD) , and Center for
I nternational Envi ronmental Low ( CI EL) .
They warned agai nst the negative effects of the WTO an d profit­
ori ented g rowth and gl obal i soti on OR the worl d' s poor, above al l on
women and chi l dren, and argued for the urgent need for a radi cal
reform of the WTO system based on the devel opment of ecol ogi cal ly­
sustai nabl e, gender- sensi ti ve and human rights- ori ented trade pol i ci es.
They expressed thei r concern at the destructi on and expl oi tati on of
nature and the envi ronment by the WTO' s trade-rel ated i ntel l ectual
property pol i ci es and they campai gned for the pri ority of human and
envi ronmental rights over trade agreements and submi tted a
Decl arati on on the Ri ght to Food.
They organised workshops, briefi ngs, worki ng groups, and press
conferences, del i vered statements and decl arati ons and met wi th
del egati ons of WTO member states and fol l owed the offi ci al
negoti ati ons at the Conventi on Centre. They were j oi ned by thousands
of peopl e i n i mpressi ve demonstrati ons, protesti ng agai nst the
i ntransigence of the WTO Secretariat, the U. S. and the EU, and took
port i n caucuses al l over the town.
Unl i ke Seattl e or other i nternati onal meeti ngs on trade and
economics l i ke those hel d i n Geneva, Cancun proved t o be - with
some excepti ons - a peaceful event with the pol i ce showi ng tol era nce
and understandi ng for soci al resi stance.
Gender and women-focused NGOs were al so very vi si bl e i n
Cancun. I n a two-day i nternati onal forum enti tl ed "Women on the
Road to Cancun - Ri ghts of Women i n Trade Agreements, " femi ni st
economi sts, gender and trade analysts, and women's advocates
analysed WTO pol i ci es from a gender and human ri ghts perspective
and drew attenti on to the si tuati on of women in the contex of existi ng
and emergi ng WTO agreements i n the areas of agri cul ture, i ntel l ectual
property ri ghts, services, an d i nvestment. At the end of the forum a
Pol i ti cal Decl arati on on the Ri ghts of Women i n Trade Agreements was
publ ished and wi del y di stri buted among ci vi l soci ety a nd government
offi ci al s. Duri ng the WTO conference itself strategy bUi l di ng sessi ons
and exchanges of i nformati on among women NGOs and networks
were successful l y co-coordi nated by the I nternati onal Gender and
Trade Network ( I GTN) . Various semi nars on gender and economic
i ssues were organi sed by I GTN, Hei nri ch B61 1 and Fri edrich E bert
Stiftung, and a women's caucus that was co-coordi nated by Mexican
women NGOs, AWI D, Women' s EDGE Coal iti on, and WEDO and
open to a broader publ i c took pl ace dai l y i n t he centre of t he ci ty.
Beyond Cancun
The anal ysi s of the process and the outcome of Cancun and
predi ctions for the future are, of course, not so easy. On the one hand,
fears that cruci al concerns of Southern countri es a bout devel opment,
ecol ogi cal sustai nabi l ity, povery eradication, and gender j ustice wi l l be
overri dden and the few gai ns of the Doha Round wi l l be l ost, are
j ustifi ed. I ndeed, the reaction of EU del egates i ndi cated such hard- l i ne
pol i ci es.
Moreover the t hreats of U. S. offi ci al s and corporate representatives
to bypass the WTO and real ise thei r aspi rati ons el sewhere must be
taken seri ousl y and woul d result in even greater l osses for the worl d' s
poor a nd for the i nternational envi ronment. On the other hand,
Southern countries and t he NGOs not onl y stated t hat "No deal i s
better than a bad -dea! ! " but hai l ed the col l apse of a very si nister
process as proof of the new strength of the underprivi l eged. The
I nternati onal Gender and Trade Network expressed the general feel i ng
by stati ng that t he "col l apse i n Cancun represents a maj or pol itical
shift i n the power dynami cs of the WTO wi th the devel opi ng countries
successful ly resisti ng power i n the face of extreme pressure
and bul l yi ng. "
Negotiati ons wi l l now be conti nued at a lower scal e i n Geneva,
where i t is anti ci pated that an extraordi nary pol icy sessi on wi l l take
pl ace in 2004. Whether a nother mi nisteri al wi l l be convened in 2005
i n Hong Kong i s uncertai n. Much depends now on how Southern
countries can make thei r newl y gai ned wei ght fel t in these processes.
NGOs wi l l conti nue to support them in these endeavours and wi l l
struggl e for thorough reforms of the WTO i n order to guarantee
transparency and democracy withi n the worl d tradi ng system whi l e
l i miti ng its agenda to trade i ssues. Onl y under these conditions can
human rights, soci al and gender j ustice, as wel l as sustai nabl e
l i vel i hoods for al l be safeguarded.
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6. 7 Cancun Fai l ure: Afri ca Showed The Way
By Devi nder Sharma*
Amidst a l ot of drama, the WTO Cancun Mi nisteri al has fai l ed. The
underdogs of economic devel opment - the African bl ock - have bai l ed
out the devel opi ng world from bei ng economi cal ly robbed. And, once
agai n, the countries, whi ch have conti nuousl y been pai nted to be i n
the ' Dark Age' , have stood up as a sol i d bl ock to bri ghten the future
of bi l l i ons of toi l i ng masses in the laj ority worl d.
The wal kout by the smal l er Afri can countries, l ed by Kenya, and
fol l owed by some Cari bbean nati ons on the contentious Si ngapore
i ssues - the four new i ssues of i nvestment, competition pol icy,
government procurement and faci l itation - whi ch the United States,
European Uni on and Japan were pushi ng i n aggressively, has actual l y
fai l ed the Cancun Mi nisteri al . The Si ngapore i ssues were ai med at
si mpl ifyi ng cross- border traffic a nd i ncrease competition and market
access for mul ti national s. The wal kout by the Africans, the second
time in the history of the WTO, cl earl y demonstrates that there i s more
to the WTO than merel y pl ayi ng to medi a gal l ery.
Fi rst i n SeaHl e i n 1 999 and then i n Cancun 2003, the Afri cans a nd
the Cari bbean have emerged as the real heroes. The fai l ure of the
WTO Mi nisteri al at SeaHl e and now at Cancun i s the di rect outcome
of the African' s frustrati on and thei r wi l l i ngness to stand to the
mi ghtiest. Kenya deserves the sal ute - j o j ita wohi si kandar. And so do
thousands of farmers, activists, and protestors who conti nued to raise
thei r voi ce ten ki l ometres away from the offi ci al venue of the
Mi nisteri al tal ks. The supreme sacri fi ce by the 56- yea r-ol d Korean
farmer, Lee Kyu ng-hae, wi l l remai n embedded i n the hi story of the
multi l ateral trade regi me as a tragi c symbol of the destructive fal l out of
the so-cal led free trade process.
The G- 23 ( as the coal iti on of I ndi a, Brazi l and Chi na al ong wi th 20
other countries i s cal l ed) i n contrast, only roa red. Li ke the street dogs
that chase any speedi ng car, they conti nued to bark and then sit back
demurely. I ndia's commerce mi ni ster, Arun Jaitl ey, who used the
uni que opportunity to pose hi msel f as the champi on of the farmers
cause, too had given i n the fi nal stages. Neither di d I ndi a, nor the
other two gi ants - Chi na and Brazi l - staged a wal k out i n protest. The
draft ci rcul ated a day before had onl y cal l ed for an end to export
subsi di es on farm products of speci al i nterest to devel opi ng countries,
but was for short of the el i mi nati on of al l s ubsi dies as demanded by
the G-23 group of devel opi ng nati ons.
Notwithstandi ng thei r tough postures outsi de and before the fi nal
moments, the fai l ure of the G- 23 to stand up and be counted had i n
real ity l ed towards a compromi se formul a l i nki ng the phase out of
agri cultural export subsi di es wi t h the unbundl i ng of the Si ngapore
i ssues, meani ng getti ng started on at l east two of these i f not al l the
fou r sectors. Except for expressi ng di spl easure, whi ch means nothi ng i n
the trade tal ks, the G- 23 fi nal l y had wagged the tai l . I ndi a, Chi na,
Mal aysi a and I ndonesi a, besi des the EU and some devel oped
countri es, were l ocked i n i ntense green room d iscussi ons i n the fi nal
stages to reach a compromise.
What happened at Cancun i s remi ni scent of the absence of ' ki l l er
i nsti nct' that conti nues t o pl ague the I ndi an soci ety. Whether i t i s
athl eti cs, hockey or cri cket, many a ti mes I ndi a has done remarkabl y
wel l i n the i nternational tournaments ti l l i t reaches the semi -fi nal s and
the fi nal s. How many ti mes can one remember the ti mes when the
nati on sat g l ued to the tel evi si on, l iteral l y on tenterhooks, watchi ng the
nai l -bi ti ng fi n ish, onl y to see the I ndi an team buckl i ng under pressure.
I n pol i tics, and more so i n trade di pl omacy, I ndia conti nues t o g ive a
repeat performance. At 2001 Doha Mi ni steri al too, the then
Commerce Mi ni ster Murasol i Maran, fought a l one agai nst the
i nequal i ties bei ng perpetuated by the gl obal trade regi me. A phone
cal l from the Pri me Mi nister at the nai l -biti ng stage, and he had to g ive
i n to the mani pul ative des igns of the ri ch and devel oped countri es.
Once agai n, I ndi a fal tered at i ts moment of crowni ng gl ory. Let us
be very cl ear, Cancun Mi nisterial fai l ed because of i nvestment i ssues
and not agri cul ture. The G- 23 di d not stage a wal kout i n anger
agai nst the gl ari ng i nequal ities present i n the fi nal mi nisteri al draft. If it
were not for the Afri can countries, Aru n Jaitel y woul d have ret urned
home empty handed. Hi s mandate, ostensi bl y with an eye on the
ensui ng el ecti ons, was to cater to the votes of the domesti c
el ectorate. I n that sense, he di d remarkabl y wel l . But i f one were to see
the approach of the BJ P-I ed Coal i ti on, i t had al l these years worked
j ust on an opposite format to what i t tried to project at Cancu n.
Thi s does not however u ndermi ne the effort of t he G-23 and the
G- 1 6 (on s peci al a nd di fferenti al treatment) countri es to speak out.
There i s no denyi ng that the G-23 countri es di d manage to create a
worl d opi nion agai nst agri cul ture subsi di es that the ri ch countries­
formi ng the Organi sati on for Economi c Cooperati on and
Devel opment ( OECD) - bestow on its mi ni scul e popul ati on of farmers.
I n fact, these subsi di es- total l i ng US $ 3 1 1 bi l l i on-are actual l y
benefiti ng food and agri cul tural compani es i n the name of farmers.
These s ubsi di es depress gl obal farm prices a nd enabl e the devel oped
countri es to dump cheaper foodgrai ns in the devel opi ng countri es,
thereby cri ppl i ng the l i vel i hoods of mi l l ions of smal l and margi nal
farmers i n the devel opi ng worl d.
What i s al so si gnificant is t hat the debate Cancun Mi nisteri al
generated, for t he fi rst ti me acknowl edged that al l subsi di es were
detri mental and trade di storti ng. Earl i er, economi sts, pol icy makers,
and many western NGOs ( i n associ ati on wi th thei r devel opi ng cou ntr
partners) and the mi ni sters had al l al ong found fault with the export
subsi di es but defended the domestic support and the g reen box
subsi di es. I t al so exposed the protecti on that the WTO provided to the
ri ch country agri cul ture by way of speci al safeguards, hi gher tari ffs a nd
other non-tariff measures. At the same ti me, it puts to shame the
rel entl ess campai gn by some organi sati ons a nd i ndivi dual s, i ncl udi ng
a section of the Confederati on of I ndi an I ndustry ( CI I) , whi ch was for
pavi ng the path for an unhi ndered entry of mul ti nati onal s wi th al l the
state protecti on for them.
, Devinder Sharma choirs the New Delhi.based Forum for Biotechnology &Food Security.
6. 8 A Turni ng Poi nt for Worl d Trade?
John Cavanagh (with Robi n BroadL The Bal ti more Sun, 1 8 September 2003
A generati on from now, anal ysts may l ook back at the World Trade
Organi zati on summi t i n Mexico as a turni ng poi nt i n t he i ncreasi ngl y
contenti ous gl obal i zati on debate.
Why? Because for the first ti me i n decades of gl obal i zati on
negoti ati ons, democracy trumped narrow el ite i nterests.
I ndi a, Brazi l , Chi na and nearly two dozen other poor nati ons,
representi ng more than half of the gl obe' s popul ati on, negoti ated as a
bl oc. Wi th backi ng from a wi de array of ci ti zen grou ps, they rejected the
meeti ng' s fi nal text, whi ch, as usual , was crafted to address the corporate
i nterests of ri cher nati ons. I n short, the many dera i l ed a trade agenda for
the few.
A number of these poor countri es, whi ch came to be known as the
Group of 2 1 , were respondi ng to strong campai gns from citizen groups
i n thei r countri es for a dramati c shi ft i n the gl obal i zati on agenda. The two
of us spent the summer crisscrossi ng one of these nati ons, the Phi l i ppi nes,
as smal l -scal e farmers, workers a nd a nti - poverty acti vi sts pressed thei r
government to stand up for thei r i nterests at the WTO s ummit.
Thei r message to the Phi l i ppi ne government was si mpl e, a nd i t was
ai med at the hear of the WTO agenda:
Don't l et Cargi l l and other g i ant agri busi ness fi rms from ri ch nati ons
use thei r government' s l avi sh farm subsi di es to dump thei r corn, ri ce and
wheat on our markets at l ow pri ces that di spl ace mi l l i ons of peasant
I n the era of Enron and Wori dCom, don't give i n to U. S. government
and corporate demands that vi tal publ i c seri ces such as heal th care,
educati on and water be offered for sal e to those same gl obal fi rms.
Don't agree to new negoti ati ons that wi l l furher handcuff
governments' abi l i ty to choose to steer i ncentives away from forei gn fi rms
toward smal l er, l ocal l y based domesti c fi rms. We met wi th these Fi l i pi no
acti vi sts agai n at the Mexi can WTO summi t as they were j oi ned by an
esti mated 1 0, 000 t o 20, 000 protesters from across Mexi co and t he rest
of the worl d. Barri cades manned by thousands of Mexi can pol i ce
prevented most of the protesters from geti ng wi thi n mi l es of thei r
government' s negotiators, who were holed up in some o� \he world's
most l uxuri ous hotel s to di scuss what WTO negotiators brazenly cal l ed a
"devel opment agenda. "
Deepl y frustrated by the metal barri cades and the unfai r rul es they
protected, a South Korean farmer, Lee Kyung Hae, pl unged a kni fe i nto
hi s chest on the meeti ngs' openi ng day.
Mr. Lee took hi s l i fe to dramati ze, in hi s own words, that " multi nati onal
corporati ons and a smal l number of bi g WTO members offi ci al s are
l eadi ng an undesi rabl e gl obal i zati on [that i s] i nhumane, envi ronmental l y
di storti ng, farmer-ki l l i ng and undemocrati c. "
Hi s sui ci de note l amented t he dumpi ng of subsi dized food i n poorer
countri es such as South Korea by gl obal corporati ons based i n weal thi er
countri es. He asked for a gl obal trade system that woul d al l ow poor
countri es to offer adequate protecti on to thei r farmers.
The fl ashpoi nt of t he WTO meeti ng was agri cul tu re, but the
democrati c revolt was about far more. The devel opi ng countri es'
negotiators i n the suites and protesters i n the streets were rej ecti ng the
"one-si ze-fits- al l " devel opment model of the WTO that i s a rel ic of the
bygone Reagan era. Fi nanci er George Soros characterizes that model as
"market fundamenta l i sm. "
By derai l i ng the fai l ed gl obal i zati on agenda of the WTO, these poor
countri es and an i ncreasi ngl y restl ess gl obal publ i c are not rejecti ng the
necessity of gl obal rul es on trade a nd i nvestment. To the contrary,
proposal s abound for repl aci ng the obsol ete WTO approach wi th fai rer
rul es a nd i nstituti ons.
For exampl e, ci ti zen l eaders under the auspi ces of the I nternati onal
Forum on Gl obal i zati on have proposed rul es that woul d al l ow
governments to put l egiti mate checks a nd bal ances on trade and
i nvestment to meet nati onal goal s - so Mexico coul d protect its corn
farmers and South Korea and Japan coul d protect thei r ri ce farmers as
vital to thei r culture. Such new rul es woul d shif the pri ority from
i ncreasi ng trade a nd i nvestment at al l costs to creati ng a framework that
steers these economic flows to bui l d heal thy communiti es, di gni fi ed work
and a cl ean envi ronment.
Now the real debate begi ns.
6. 9 The Mea ni ng of Cancun
S. p Shukl a
S P Shukla i s the convenor of the
I ndian Peopl e' s Campaign against
the WL and was former I ndian
ambassador to the LA¯¯

Cancun di d not exi st on the map of Mexi co onl y three decades
ago. I t was constructed l iteral l y out of nothi ng on a beach on the
south-eastern ti p of Mexi co for the i ndul gence of the ri ch Ameri can
tourists. But it is a name not unfami l i ar to those who have been
keepi ng track of the l ong and chequered hi story of the North -South
di al ogue. Cancun was i n the news once before. And it was bad news
for the South. I t was at Cancu n i n 1 98 1 that Ronal d Reagan fi nal l y
buri ed the North -South di al og ue of
the 1 970s.
What does the recent news from Cancun portend for the South ?
For I ndi a? Let us fi rst get the facts cl ea r. The WTO mi ni steri al meeti ng
at Cancun was a mi d-term meeti ng of the Doha Round l aunched i n
November, 2001 . The break-down of t he Cancun meeti ng does not
si gni fy the break-down of the Doha round. I n the past too, mi d-term
mi nisteri al meeti ngs have foundered, ego The Montreal mi nisteri al
meeti ng i n December 1 988 whi ch was the mi d-term mi ni steri al of the
U ruguay Round l aunched i n September 1 986. It broke down as there
was no agreement on Agri cultu re, TRI PS, Texti l es and Safeguards. The
tussl e on Agri cul ture was then mai nl y between EEC and the Cai rns
Group countri es. The resi stance on the other three i ssues was
essenti al l y put up by I ndi a and Brazi l . But the space so obtai ned by
preventi ng unfavourabl e deci si ons i n these a reas i n Montreal was
soon l ost as the Government of I ndi a succumbed to the bi l ateral
pressures, mai nl y from USA; wi thdrew its opposi ti on; and agreed, i n
Apri l 1 989, to bri ngi ng i n the s ubstanti ve aspects of i ntel l ectual
property ri ghts wi thi n the scope of the negoti ati ons. That si gnal ed not
onl y the paradi gm change for the GATT system but al so the end of the
sol i darity of the South strenuousl y bui lt over the years under the
l eadershi p of I ndi a and Brazi l . The seed of the al l - embraci ng and
coercive WTO system that emerged i n 1 995 was sown i n Apri l 1 989,
i roni cal l y, soon after, a nd i n spite of , the successful manoeuvre at the
Montreal meeti ng to wi n space for the sustai ned fi g ht to resi st such an
outcome !
The "Statement" adopted by the mi nisters i n the wrap- up sessi on
of the Cancun meeti ng i s vague on the exact stage of negoti ati ons
reached at Cancu n a nd t he di recti on of further work t o be done. I t
merel y cal l s for "more work . . . to be done i n some key a reas to
enabl e us to proceed toward the concl usi on of the negoti ati ons. "
Havi ng fai l ed themselves to resol ve the deadl ock, the Mi ni sters have
now i nstructed thei r subordi nate offi ci al s and the Di rector - General of
WTO to conti nue worki ng on the outstandi ng i ssues ! A speci fic date
i . e. 1 5th December 2003 has been i ndicated by whi ch a meeti ng of
the General Counci l of WTO has to be convened at the offici al level .
The Statement adds: / We wi l l bri ng with us i nto thi s new phase al l the
val uabl e work that has been done at thi s Conference. I n those a reas
where we have reached a hi gh l evel of convergence on texts, we
undertake to mai ntai n thi s convergence whi l e worki ng for a n
acceptabl e overal l outcome. Notwithstandi ng thi s setback, we reaffirm
al l our Doha Decl arations and Deci si ons and recommit oursel ves to
worki ng to i mpl ement them ful l y and fai thful ly." ¯
It is al l very wel l to sound positive in the face of a cl ear deadl ock.
But where does i t l eave the process of negotiations? The pal pabl e and
repeatedl y stated differences l eave unbri dgeabl e gaps i n the cruci al
areas of Agri cul ture
the Si ngapore I ssues and Non -Agricul tu re
Market Access . Where then is " a hi gh degree of convergence of
texts" ? Is it to be presumed that there was near-agreement, behi nd the
scenes ,on i ssues l i ke Services, Speci al and Di fferenti al Treatment and
I mpl ementation? And what were the contents of such agreement? Thi s
becomes i mportant because the stated posi ti ons spoke of l arge
differences on these i ssues too.
There is a feel i ng of some rel i ef that the deadl ock at Cancun has
kept the Si ngapore i ssues at bay , confi ni ng them to the cl arification
process whi ch commenced at Doha two years ago. But one must not
forget that the Doha Decl aration cl earl y "recognizes the case for a
mul ti l ateral framework" for al l the new i ssues and the l ast two years
have witnessed del i berati ons on the new i ssues whi ch have verged on
negoti ati ons. Moreover, the strong opposition put forward by the
Afri can, Cari bbean and Pacific countries , the l east devel oped
countries and some others , to negotiati ons proper bei ng l aunched on
these i ssue has been mai nl y on the ground that they wanted the
cl arification process to conti nue. And there a re reports that I ndia was
not averse to a " compromi se" by agreei ng to l aunchi ng negotiati ons
on two of the Si ngapore I ssues vi z; "Government Procurement " and :
"Trade Faci l itation" whi l e aski ng for conti nuati on of the cl arificatory
process on the remai ni ng i ssues of "I nvestment" and " Trade
faci l itation" . The fact of the matter i s that the Doha l egacy of al l owi ng
the bri dgehead for further atack by the devel oped countries and thei r
multi nati onal s on our autonomy of pol i cy- maki ng i s very much al ive
and the deadl ock in Cancun by itsel f i s not enough to avert that
onsl aught.
' l
i .
The other areo of deep di vi si ons at Cancun was the i ssue of
Agri cul ture. Not too l ong ago, the advocates and apol ogi sts of WO
( and the Agreement on Agri cul ture whi ch was its i ntegral part) had
created i l l usi ons about enormous prospects for agri cul tura l exports.
The actual operati on of the Agreement on Agri cul ture, combi ned wi th
the i mpact of the so- cal l ed economi c reforms, over the l ast few
years, has left no doubt i n the mi nds of our peasantry a nd farmers
that, for them , there is l ittl e to gai n and much to l ose, i n the WO
regi me. The unprecedented di stress whi ch our agri cul ture i s
experi enci ng i s not admitted by our Government. But the swel l i ng
di scontent i n the rural hi nterl and on t hi s account has not escaped at
l east some secti ons i n the rul i ng establ i shment. That expl ai ns the
Government stance of strong cri ti ci sm' of the domesti c support and
export subsi dy regi mes of EU and USA. And the consequent rol e the
I ndi an Del egati on has pl ayed i n contri buti ng to the emergence and
sol idarity of G-2 1 i n t he Cancun context. But here too, the
Government i s under the i l l usi on that emphasi s on reducti on i n
domesti c suppor and subsi di es of E U and USA may provi de them
enough room to conti nue wi th adequate l evel of tariffs to protect the
i nterests of the I ndi an peasantry. The l atest draft on the tabl e at
Cancun presented by the Chai rman of the meeti ng not only was soft
on both E U a n USA i n regard to thei r regi mes of support and
subsi di es but al so l eft no doubt whatsoever that t he markets of
popul ous countri es l i ke I ndi a and Chi na were the mai n focus of the
market- access area of negoti ati ons. The proposal s contai ned
provi si ons to reduce tariffs i n devel opi ng countri es substanti al l y and at
a faster rate. Not onl y that. They contai ned a provi si on to bi nd a
desi gnated number of tari f l i nes to as l ow l evel of tariff as between 0
and 5 % ! There i s the real danger to our agri cul ture. And nothi ng
short of recl ai mi ng and asserti ng t he unqual i fi ed ri ght t o i mpose
quantitative restricti ons on agri cul ture i mports can save our
agri cul ture and t he l ivel i hood of t he seventy percent of our peopl es.
Government of I ndi a' s stand i s l ong on rhetoric about what EU and
USA must do about t he support and subsi di es they gi ve t o thei r
agri cul tu re . But our Government i s total l y si l ent on t he vital i ssue of
the q uantitative restricti ons, a ri ght that i t has to cl ai m a nd exercise i n
the i nterest of our peasantry and peopl e.
Si mi l arl y, Government has not opposed the formul ati ons i n t he
l atest draft decl arati on at Cancun on Seri ces where the ai m of t he
negoti ati ons was sought t o be reduced si mpl y t o progressi vel y h i g her
l evel s of l i beral i sati on" of seri ces sectors whi l e the General
Agreement on Trade i n Servi ces i tsel f unambi gousl y an d expl i ci tl y
recogn i ses the devel opment di mensi on. I t has not a l so expressed i tsel f
agai nst the suppl y of services l i ke Health, Educati on, Water Suppl y etc
whi ch consti tute basi c h uman ri ghts, bei ng commodi fi ed i n the name
of l i bera l i sati on.
The danger i s that trade maj ors wi l l now resort to t he bi l ateral
processes to compl ete the unfi ni shed tasks of Cancun. I mportant
members of G-2 1 as wel l as the ACP and other groupi ngs wi l l be
subjected to pressures and bl andi shments. As we have seen, there a re
openi ngs avai l abl e and si gnal s given to make such process possi bl e.
And i t i s here that the sol i darity of the South wi l l be tested.
That the break-down of Cancun meeti ng has averted the
i mmedi ate di saster i n the a reas of agri culture and the Si ngapore i ssues
i s a posi ti ve devel opment. And al l those i n the camp of the South(
whether i n the Conference hal l or outSi de) who brought it about
deserve congratul ati ons. The task now i s to ensure that the space
gai ned at Cancun i s not al lowed to be frittered away i n the next t hree
months or so, when the bi l ateral a rm-twisti ng wi l l be rampant. I n other
words, no repeat of "Geneva Surrender of Apri l 1 989 shoul d be
a l l owed.
What are the prospects of averti ng thi s danger? I n some respects
the obj ective s ituati on is perhaps more favourabl e now tha n i n the
spri ng of 1 989. Apri l 1 989 si gni fi ed the end of the sol i darity of the
South. Cancun , on the contrary, has wi tnessed re-emergence of the
sol i dari ty of the Sout h, after a l ong i nterval of good t hi rteen yea rs. Al l
those who were wi shi ng away the existence of South, ( i ncl udi ng a
secti on of i ntel l ectual s and . some governments i n the South, i ncl udi ng
our ownl ) and j umpi ng for opportuni st, i ssue- based coal iti ons cutti ng
across the real ity of the North -South divi de, have received a rude
s hock. The l eaders of the North have fel t the sti ng acutel y. Whi ch
expl ai ns the reported outbursts of Pascal Lamy, EU Trade
Commi ssi oner and Rober Zoel l i ck, USTR . Lamy cal l ed t he processes
in Cancun through whi ch the maj ori ty of the devel opi ng countri es
found some voi ce as " medi eval ". liThe USTR Robert Zoel l i ck, at hi s
press conference was a rrogant, and sai d: " If countri es want t o behave
l i ke i n the UN and onl y make demands i nstead of negoti ati ons maki ng
i nfl ammatory rhetoric then trade negoti ati ons are not possi bl e. / He
vi rtual l y cursed the G 2 1 . . + ¯
For the emergi ng sol i darity to survi ve and become stronger, i t i s
obvi ous that countri es l i ke I ndi a, Brazi l , Chi na and South Afri ca have
to band together i n evol vi ng common strategi es and not attempt to cut
short-si ghted , bi l ateral deal s. For us in I ndi a, it is i mportant to ensure
through popul ar pressu re that the opportunity offered by the

i nterregnum is uti l i zed by Government to furher strengthen the stand
on agri cul ture a nd services as i ndi cated earl i er. I n t he spr i ng of 1 989,
the i ssue that t he Ameri cans were pushi ng for was i ntel l ectual property
ri ghts, a n esoteri c a rea whi ch then had l ittl e potenti al for generati ng
mass enthusi asm for resi stance. Now i n t he aftermath of Cancur, i t i s
t he openi ng of our markets for i mports of agri cul tural products that i s
bei ng sought by EU and USA and t hi s affects t he ver l ivel i hood of the
maj ority of our peopl e. Al ready there i s resi stance devel opi ng to the
govern ment pol i ci es i n thi s area. And no government can afford to
i gnore i t except at its own peri l . I t is equal ly i mportant that the
Government i s persuaded to gi ve u p the ambi guity i n its stand on al l
the fou r Si ngapore i ssues. I f that happens, the Government wi l l have
the backi ng of a trul y nati onal consensus supporti ng it i n WTO. Thi s
wi l l al so augur wel l for the emergi ng sol i darity of the South.
! and 2: Vide "Civil Society hai l s Cancun Failure" by C. Raghavan i n SUNS BULLETIN NO. 54 ! º DATED
ì ó.º.03 :north·south development monitor(electronic edition), published by Third World Network, Geneva,
Chief Editor: C.Raghavan

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