Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 33 n° 348

Posts Tagged ‘World Trade Organization’

New Sustainability Strategies Threaten Food Security

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 30 aprile 2012

WWF 'Power the Future'

WWF 'Power the Future' (Photo credit: WWF@COP17)

Melbourne, Australia – In a new report released today the pro-development NGO, World Growth, exposed the breathtaking ambition of the world’s largest environmental NGO, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), to control global supply chains of vital food products. WWF’s strategy threatens to restrict trade and business and undermines efforts to increase global food supplies. The report – “Abuse of Sustainability Standards – An Attack on Free Trade, Competition and Economic Growth,” shows how WWF and major global food corporations like Unilever are working together to capture markets and dictate food standards in developing countries, while limiting consumer choice in rich countries. World Growth Chairman and former Ambassador to the GATT (the predecessor to the World Trade Organization) Alan Oxley released the following statement:
“WWF is working with major global companies to seize control of global supply chains of vital food stuffs under the guise of improving the environment. As a result, farmers in rich and poor countries alike and consumers in rich countries face the prospect of higher prices and limited choice. At a time when global food production should be expanding to meet burgeoning global demand, this strategy will limit production.
“WWF has declared a new strategy – ‘Transforming Markets’ – to capture supply chains in key products such as timber and paper, palm oil, soy, fish, beef, dairy and sugar to force their sustainability standards onto farmers and restrict consumer choice. It is enlisting businesses which control key links in global supply chains as partners to demand suppliers meet these standards, including retailers like Wal-Mart and consumer goods manufacturers like Nestlé. “For 20 years WWF has tried, without success, to convince consumers to voluntarily buy only products which meet its sustainability standards. Now its strategy is to limit the choice for consumers and pressure retailers and manufacturers to demand farmers apply WWF Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) standards. Generally these standards override national environmental policies and impose limits on farming.“Industry executives like the CEO of Unilever, have reportedly conceded that the new products will be more expensive and that the increased costs will have to be borne by producers.“Environmental NGOs have pressed for years for sustainability screening of imports. A current example is an EU control on imports of biofuels. Now they seek to enlist major food producers and retailers as partners in strategies to control supply chains.“This is bad news all round. The result will be higher costs for producers in developing countries and higher prices for consumers in developed economies.”
World Growth is a non-profit, non-governmental organization established to expand the research, information, advocacy, and other resources to improve the economic conditions and living standards in developing and transitional countries. At World Growth, we embrace the age of globalization and the power of free trade to eradicate poverty and create jobs and opportunities. World Growth supports the production of palm oil and the use of forestry as a means to promote economic growth, reduce poverty and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. World Growth believes a robust cultivation of palm oil and forestry provides an effective means of environmental stewardship that can serve as the catalyst for increasing social and economic development. For more information on World Growth, visit http://www.worldgrowth.org.

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Si chiude l’8a Ministeriale Wto a Ginevra

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 19 dicembre 2011

English: United Nations Framework Convention o...

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Ginevra/Wto Nulla di fatto sulla chiusura del Doha Round, il ciclo negoziale della Wto lanciato 10 anni fa in Qatar e finalizzato ad una progressiva liberalizzazione dei mercati globali, dietro alla retorica dello “sviluppo” che, come denunciato anche dai Governi di alcuni Paesi emergenti e del Sud del mondo, non è mai diventato il vero centro del Round negoziale. Una ministeriale che è stata caratterizzata dall’entrata di alcuni Paesi, tra cui la Russia, nella grande famiglia della Wto, ma anche da un nuovo approccio che, per superare il riconosciuto fallimento dell’Agenda di Doha, vede “coalizioni dei volenterosi” limitate a pochi Paesi trovare accordi su specifici settori, com’è accaduto sul tema degli appalti pubblici tra Usa, Unione europea ed altri 22 Paesi. Un plurilateralismo che dimostra l’inadeguatezza della Wto di tenere assieme molti temi su un’! agenda così ampia. Così si conferma l’incapacità dei Governi del G20 a costruire una reale governance globale aldilà dei roboanti impegni assunti nel recente vertice di Cannes.
Un approccio, quello della Wto, ideologico e senza una vera e propria valutazione d’impatto della propria agenda.
“La liberalizzazione dei mercati e la loro progressiva deregolementazione”, dichiara Leopoldo Tartaglia, responsabile dipartimento politiche globali della CGIL “stanno alla base della crescita delle disuguaglianze e della crisi economica che stiamo vivendo. Evitare ogni analisi di impatto di queste politiche mostra un atteggiamento che sconfina nell’ideologico, perchè non ne considera le conseguenze sulla vita delle persone e sugli ecosistemi, negando proprio quello sviluppo sostenibile che si afferma di voler perseguire”.
Nonostante le difficoltà, l’agenda liberalizzatrice procede, facendo apparire all’orizzonte anche dei nuovi temi (New issues) come la sovranità alimentare e la lotta al cambiamento climatico, che hanno portato ad una dura contrapposizione tra il rapporteur Onu De Schutter ed il direttore Wto Pascal Lamy sulla legittimità o meno della Wto di toccare tali temi. “I New Issues sono un aspetto molto delicato” dichiara Monica Di Sisto, vicepresidente di Fair presente a Ginevra come organizzazione accreditata e parte della rete internazionale OWINFS, “perchè rischiano di mettere sotto un’ottica economicista e liberista questioni che attengono ai diritti dell’uomo e del pianeta che proprio per questo devono essere esclusi dai negoziati”.
Per CGIL e Fair c’è il rischio che la Wto voglia mettere le mani su aspetti come la sovranità alimentare, la lotta al cambiamento climatico ed i diritti ad un lavoro dignitoso che sono argomenti che dovrebbero essere affrontati in sedi più appropriate, come la Fao per la questione della sovranità alimentare, l’UNFCCC sul cambiamento climatico e l’Organizzazione Internazionale del Lavoro, per l’occupazione ed il lavoro dignitoso e, nonostante alcune affermazioni contenute nella dichiarazione finale, ha dimostrato ancora una volta di non voler affrontare coerentemente i problemi posti dai Paesi del Sud del mondo, a cominciare dalla questione del cotone.

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Durban’s Mission: Food Security First

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 29 novembre 2011

English: Skyline of Durban, South Africa, in t...

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Durban, South Africa – On the opening day of the United Nations climate talks in Durban, the pro-development NGO World Growth released a new report urging world leaders to focus on the importance of food security, particularly in Africa, and the critical role of palm oil as an effective strategy to reduce food insecurity. Palm oil as part of the solution is under threat by environmental NGOs, some leading industrialized economies, as well as the World Bank, who seek to halt the conversion of forest land to palm oil and to install sustainability standards that will curtail expansion of palm oil plantations in Africa. The new report by World Growth features a foreword by President J. A. Kufuor, Former President of the Republic of Ghana. President Kufuor writes about the importance for addressing long-standing hunger and food insecurity challenges that have plagued Africa and how the South East Asian experience with palm oil can provide the path forward for Africa: “Poverty alleviation in Africa continues to lag the rest of the world. The rural poor are a large proportion of the food insecure – half of Africa’s food insecure people are smallholders. The problems facing Africans in accessing food supplies are clear. Agricultural productivity is low. Post-harvest losses are high, as are the costs of internal transport and distribution. As a consequence, smallholders are unable to produce enough either to feed their families or to lift them out of poverty. In South-East Asia, commercial palm oil plantations have been highly successful at reducing rural poverty levels, fostering employment for small holders, developing rural infrastructure, and providing a source of inexpensive, staple food for the population as a whole.”World Growth Chairman and former Ambassador to the GATT (the predecessor to the World Trade Organization) made the following observations:“In Africa, several palm oil development projects are in the process of being implemented. If they proceed to fruition, these investments have the ability to increase the local supply of an important food staple, reduce the need for Africa to import substantial quantities of palm oil, provide the basis for a new export industry and, most importantly, boost job creation in a region historically beset by poverty.“Yet this miracle is under threat from Western sustainability standards, championed by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) that will undermine efforts to strengthen food security amongst the very poor, such as smallholders. Efforts in Durban will also seek to instill new policies that enshrine a view that forest land conversion should be halted due to its large contribution to greenhouse gas emissions. Data points out this is inaccurate as the levels of emissions claimed by the World Bank and other leading economies is half of what they claim. These actions by Greens like WWF and the World Bank threaten Africa’s food security and should be resisted by developing nations during the negotiations.”

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