WTO opponents support farmers

15 September 1999

WTO opponents support farmers

AN UMBRELLA group representing more than 1,000 interest groups in 87 countries has called for a halt to the World Trade Organisation talks.

It claims that the last round of talks, which resulted in the Uruguay agreement, benefited multi-national corporations at the expense of farmers.

The group will launch a petition today to demand that the talks, due to begin in the north-west US city of Seattle in November, are called off.

The group, led by Public Citizen, a consumer activist group, is opposed to any expansion of the trade body.

Their petition, dubbed a “mobilisation against globalisation,” calls for a formal review of the international trading system to make it more accountable.

Consumers International, a worldwide federation of consumer groups, is also opposing further trade liberalisation.

It says negotiations should first ensure adequate protection for consumers and a more equal distribution of benefits.

The group was also critical of the Uruguay Round between 1986-1993 which it said had not delivered what it had promised.

The World Trade Organisation is already committed to further liberalisation of agricultural trade when trade ministers meet in Seattle.

See more