The meeting is at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center

Other ministerial meetings

Top 10 Reasons to Oppose the World Trade Organization?
Criticism, yes … misinformation, no!

More incorrect facts about the WTO found on websites:    

 4. ‘The WTO is destroying the environment’
The accusation

The WTO is being used by corporations to dismantle hard-won environmental protections, who call them barriers to trade. In 1993 the very first WTO panel ruled that a regulation of the US Clean Air Act, which required both domestic and foreign producers alike to produce cleaner gasoline, was illegal [1]. Recently, the WTO declared illegal a provision of the Endangered Species Act [2] that requires shrimp sold in the US to be caught with an inexpensive device that allows endangered sea turtles to escape. The WTO is currently negotiating an agreement that would eliminate tariffs on wood products, which would increase the demand for timber and escalate deforestation [3].


The reality

1. The WTO panel ruled in 1996. It did not rule that the US Clean Air Act was illegal. It ruled that the act should be applied equally to domestic and foreign producers alike, and should not be more lenient towards domestic producers.

2. The “shrimp-turtle” panel and the appeals body stated clearly that the US can pursue the protection of endangered turtles. They did not rule that the provision of the Endangered Species Act is illegal. They ruled, among other things, that the US government was discriminating against Asian suppliers and in favour of Caribbean suppliers.

3. In addition to the proposal to lower tariffs on wood products, there are proposals which include environmental conservation issues. The outcome depends entirely on what governments are willing to do. Find out more here.



The accusations

1. The WTO only serves the interests of multinational corporations
The WTO is a stacked court
The WTO tramples over labor and human rights
4. The WTO is destroying the environment
The WTO is killing people
The US adoption of the WTO was undemocratic
The WTO undermines local development and penalizes poor countries
The WTO is increasing inequality
The WTO undermines national sovereignty
The tide is turning against free trade and the WTO!

Find out more

In the booklet, Seattle: What’s at stake?
Concerns … and responses (1)
Concerns … and responses (2)

On the main WTO website
10 Common Misunderstandings about the WTO

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