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Monday, June 09, 2003

Friends of the Earth has issued a press release which suggests that deep differences exist between many of the countries attending tomorrow's WTO Working Group on Investment, regarding the future liberalisation of foreign investment...

This working group will be the last round of formal negotiations before September's WTO Ministerial in Cancun, Mexico where agreement on the full "Doha" WTO agenda (re: trade funded development) is supposed to be achieved...

According to FoE:

"The WTO investment agreement is highly controversial because of doubt over whether it will bring about more investment, let alone help alleviate poverty, improve economies, or promote sustainable development. It will also restrict countries' abilities to control foreign investment and regulate their own economies. There are suspicions that the agenda is being driven by big business, as it is being promoted by countries with multinationals who are responsible for most foreign investment, rather than by the needs and demands of the developing countries."

"A number of developing countries have repeatedly reinforced their opposition to such an agreement and have instead called for the issue of global corporate accountability regulation to be addressed."