- Published on Wednesday, 15 March 2017 15:06
Edition no: 29 of Nyeleni Newsletter is now online.
There is growing distrust and mobilisation against Free Trade Agreements (FTAs). FTAs hurt food sovereignty because they:
- Erase the possibility of public strategies supporting local markets.
- Lower or remove tariffs on imported goods, hurting local small-scale food producers who cannot compete with large subsidised agribusiness imports.
- Harmonise standards on food safety, pesticides, GMOs and animal welfare benefitting corporations : the imposed lowest standards protect their profit margins.
- Rewrite patent laws, requiring countries to privatise plants and animals; criminalise peasants who save and exchange seeds and breeds thus damaging biodiverse food systems.
- Require that foreign investors be treated better than domestic ones, gaining more access to land and water, and powerful rights to defend themselves through investor-state arbitration that is fundamentally anti-democratic.
FTAs aren’t just about ‘trade’. They’re comprehensive agreements to lock in free market capitalism, strengthen the power of global corporations, finance, and powerful governments, and advance their geopolitical objectives. There are direct links between FTAs, climate change, ecological devastation, and violations of Indigenous Peoples’, workers’ and farmers’ rights. Trump’s election and Brexit partly reflected public outrage at free market economics – but channelled support for exclusionary, divisive racist nationalism. We must struggle for real systemic change, saying “no to FTAs and global free market capitalism”, combatting racist politics and defending mother earth.
We can’t turn FTAs into tools of people power. They should be buried, not born again.
Credits for the edition: bilaterals.org and GRAIN
Front page illustration: Anthony Freda | www.AnthonyFreda.com
- Published on Tuesday, 14 March 2017 16:13
For healthy and quality food, decent work, and a just and sustainable agricultural policy in a Europe of the People and of Solidarity.
We call on ECVC’s member organizations, allied groups, grassroots networks, and the whole peasant and food sovereignty movement in Europe to mobilize this 25 March – on the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome – for another Europe, for one that cares for its population and not that protects corporate interests, for an agricultural policy that provides quality food, decent income for producers, decent work and protects the environment.
- Published on Friday, 10 March 2017 15:02
(March 8, 2017)Today, The Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC) as all liberals and progressives people in the world, are celebrating the International Women's Day. On this occasion, UAWC would like to confirm its profound faith in the principle of emancipation of women, where UAWC believes that the liberation of any society can only be achieved by assuring women's liberation and their equal participation in all sectors, since women are half the society.
- Published on Thursday, 09 March 2017 15:34
Opening speech by Elizabeth Mpofu (General Secretary of La Via Campesina) of the Peasants’ Rights Congress in Schwabisch Hall, Germany on March 8
The need for a UN Declaration on the Rights of Peasants and other People Working in Rural Areas is all the more urgent and evident in the 21st century. Despite years of campaigning for a better recognition and protection of the rights of peasants, displacements and criminalization continue affecting hundreds of thousands of peasants globally.
Hunger and malnutrition, unemployment and poverty all have something in common; they are more prevalent in rural areas and the countryside. Because of this, most people coming from the countryside, have been exploited (policies forced upon them with limited consultation and participation), dispossessed, displaced, criminalized, brutally treated by those in power and the rich, sometimes taken to court and/or killed for defending their rights related to natural resources, values and culture. Such injustices in most cases have gone unpunished or reported. Laws or political concepts have been made to sanitize and sanctify social injustices. The future UN declaration on the rights of peasants and other people working in rural areas will contribute to solve these problems by recognizing rights to land, water, seeds and other natural resources and stressing the importance of improving access to productive resources and investment in appropriate rural development. This will be a milestone for peasants and rural people all over the world.