Press Releases 2013

WTO Bali package: A giant step for the WTO, a small step for Fair Trade

7 December 2013 (Brussels) – The World Trade Organization (WTO) agreed last night in Bali a package of measures, possibly the most significant achievement of the WTO since its creation in 1995. The package includes decisions to increase market access opportunities for farmers from Least Developed Countries, in particular cotton farmers, and to temporarily allow governments to take measures to guarantee food security, to be re-discussed in two years´ time.

Sergi Corbalán, Executive Director of the Fair Trade Advocacy Office, stated “We welcome the package as a step in the right direction, yet there is a long way to go before WTO rules become a tool to ensure sustainable livelihoods for all”. read more

200 Mayors support Fair Trade in new global goals for poverty eradication and sustainable development post-2015

23 September 2013 (New York) – The signers of the “Fair Trade Beyond 2015” Declaration were unveiled today ahead of the United Nations’ event on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). This Declaration, which has been signed amongst others by the Mayors of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Seoul (South Korea), Paris (France) and Madrid (Spain), calls on world leaders to support Fair Trade in the post-2015 global sustainable development framework that will replace the MDGs, stressing that any new global framework must also be a fair one. read more

Uniting World Mayors for Fair Trade

27 May 2013 (Rio de Janeiro) – Support from the Mayors of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Seoul (South Korea), Poznan (Poland) and Oxford (United Kingdom), together with other world cities, to the “Fair Trade Beyond 2015” Declaration has been unveiled today. This declaration calls on world leaders to support Fair Trade in the post-2015 global sustainable development framework that will replace the Millennium Development Goals. read more

Cooperatives and Fair Trade promote people-centred businesses together

5 June 2013, Brussels – Cooperatives Europe and Fair Trade Advocacy Office join forces to underline the role that people-centred businesses should have in the EU development strategy. To this end they organized the high level conference ‘People-centred businesses: making supply chains work for small producers’, hosted by MEP Gay Mitchell.

While the EU has expressed the wish to work more closely with the local private sector to achieve EU development objectives, Cooperatives and Fair Trade underline the need to enhance an enterprise model putting people and not profit at the heart of business. read more

EU’s Snail Pace To Tackling Supply Chain Abuse

Brussels 31 January 2013 – Acknowledging the abusive buying practices which are widely applied in European grocery supply chains, the European Commission has just launched its European Retail Action Plan and a Green Paper on unfair trading practices. While the paper notes widespread supply chain abuses which disadvantage suppliers, it recommends running a ‘twin-track’ approach where one track experiments with a voluntary weak system managed by trade associations operating close to the retail end of the supply chain.

Whilst the paper is a welcome acknowledgement of the bullying practices employed in the industry, experience shows that a voluntary approach is not credible and the EU should not waste time or resources nor should it give such an approach any legitimacy. read more

New Global Challenges Need New Global Leadership

Civil society networks identify gaps in the job description of the new WTO Director-General

Brussels 28 January 2013 – On the eve of the job interviews that will be held at the World Trade Organization (WTO) with the candidates to replace the current Director-General, Pascal Lamy, civil society networks point out gaps in the job description. They call on WTO members to appoint a leader with a recognised track-record in making trade serve the wider interests of society.

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