susanreads: my avatar, a white woman with brown hair and glasses (Default)
[personal profile] susanreads
ISDS: Invester State Dispute Settlement mechanism, a system of courts run by corporate lawyers in which companies can sue governments, outside of the normal judicial process, when they claim to have been discriminated against. Apologists for the mechanism say its purpose is to protect firms when government unfairly favour domestic firms over foreign ones, or expropriate their property. That's not how it's actually used.

TTIP: Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, a big trade deal currently being negotiated between the US and the EU (see also TPP (US and Pacific countries), CETA (Canada and EU)). Includes ISDS mechanism.

Promoters say TTIP will be good for the economy and create jobs, but of course it will destroy jobs and only be good for some big firms that are doing well in the economy already, because that's how these trade deals work, from NAFTA onwards (and maybe before that, before my time). But if ISDS stays in it'll be even worse: a danger to all our public services and a benefit to no-one except evil multinationals.

A case in point: Canadian-Australian company OceanaGold wants to open a gold mine in El Salvador, which would pollute the country's remaining clean water (90% of their water is already contaminated). El Salvador rejected the mine, so the company is suing them at ICSID (International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes), a World Bank tribunal. This is the sort of thing ISDS will be used for if we don't stop it. More detail from The Guardian.

There's a petition to the World Bank to drop the case against El Salvador at Sum of Us, and you can join the fight against TTIP in the UK at noTTIP.
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susanreads: my avatar, a white woman with brown hair and glasses (Default)
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