Another road for Europe: the Appeal

Europe is in crisis because it has been hijacked by neoliberalism and finance. In the last twenty years – with a persistent democratic deficit – the meaning of the European Union has increasingly been reduced to a narrow view of the single market and the single currency, leading to liberalisations and speculative bubbles, loss of rights and the explosion of inequalities.

 

This is not the Europe that was imagined decades ago as a space of economic and political integration free from war. This is not the Europe that was built through economic and social progress, the extension of democracy and welfare rights.

 

This European project is now in danger.

 

Facing the financial crisis, European authorities and governments have acted irresponsibly; they saved private banks but refused to contain the difficulties of indebted countries using the tools of the Monetary Union; they imposed on all countries austerity policies and cuts in public budgets that will now be enshrined in European Treaties. The results are that the financial crisis has extended to more countries, the euro is in danger, a new great depression and the risk of disintegration of Europe are looming.

 

Europe can survive only if another road is taken. Another Europe is possible. Europe has to mean social justice, environmental responsibility, democracy and peace. This is what the larger part of Europe’s culture and society yearns for. This is the way indicated by justice movements, mobilisations for dignity and against austerity policies. But it is the sort of Europe that has been ignored by dominant political forces in Europe. This other Europe is not a new superstate nor is it another intergovernmental bureaucracy. A form of democratic governance for Europe is needed if we are to address the global challenges that nation-states are not able to manage.

 

Along the road to another Europe, visions of change, protest and alternatives have to be woven into a common framework. We propose six objectives.

 

A smaller finance. Finance – at the root of the crisis – should be prevented from destroying the economy. The Monetary Union should be reorganised and provide a collective guarantee for the public debt of eurozone countries; the European Central Bank should become the Union’s lender of last resort. The burden of debt cannot be allowed to destroy countries in financial difficulty. All financial transactions have to be taxed, imbalances resulting from capital movements need be reduced, stricter regulations should ban the more speculative and risky financial activities, the division between commercial and investment banks has to be restored, a European public rating agency should be created.

 

More integrated economic policies. Europe needs to move past old and new Stability Pacts, beyond policies limited to the single market and the single currency. Europe’s actions need to address imbalances in the real economy and the direction of development. Deep changes in taxation systems are needed, with a tax harmonization in Europe and a shift in taxation from labour to wealth and non-renewable resources, with new revenues to fund European spending.

 

Public expenditure – at national and European levels – should be used to stimulate demand, defend welfare policies, extend public services. Industrial and innovation policies have to orient production and consumption towards high-skill, high-quality, sustainable activities. Eurobonds should be introduced not just to refinance public debt, but to fund the ecological conversion of Europe’s economy.

 

More jobs and labour rights, less inequality. Labour rights and welfare are at the core of the meaning of Europe. After decades of policies that have created precarious jobs, poverty and unemployment, bringing inequality back to the levels of the 1930s, the priority for Europe is the creation of stable, high wage jobs – especially for women and youth – supporting low incomes and protecting trade union rights, collective bargaining and democracy at the workplace.

 

Protecting the environment. Sustainability, the green economy, energy and resource efficiency are the new meaning of Europe’s growth. All policies need to take into account environmental effects, reduce climate change and the use of non-renewable resources, favouring clean, renewable energies, energy efficiency, local production, sobriety in consumption.

 

Practising democracy. The forms of representative democracy through parties and governments – and the social dialogue among organisations representing capital and labour – are less and less able to provide answers to current problems. At European level the common decision-making process is increasingly replaced by the rule of the strongest. The crisis takes legitimacy away from EU institutions; the Commission increasingly acts as a bureaucratic support of the strongest member states, the Central Bank is unaccountable and the European Parliament does not fully use its powers and anyway is still excluded from crucial decisions on economic governance.

 

In past decades, Europe’s citizens have taken centre stage in social mobilisations and in practices of participatory and deliberative democracy – from European Social Forums to the protests of indignados. These experiences need an institutional response. There is the need to overcome the mismatch between social change and political and institutional arrangements that are a remnant of the past.

 

European societies need not be inward-looking. The social and political inclusion of migrants is a key test for Europe’s democracy. Closer ties can be built with the movements for democracy on the Southern shores of the Mediterranean after the downfall of authoritarian regimes.

 

Making peace and upholding human rights. The integration of Europe has made it possible to overcome century-old conflicts, but Europe remains the site of nuclear weapons and aggressive military postures, and European countries still spend one fifth of world military expenditure: 316 billion dollars in 2010. With current budgetary problems, drastic cuts and transformation in military budgets are urgent. Europe’s peace does not result from projecting military force, but from a policy of human and common security that can contribute to peace and the protection of human rights. Europe has to open up to the new democracies of the Arab world in the same way as it opened up to Central and Eastern Europe after 1989.

 

We propose to bring this agenda for another Europe to the European Parliament and to Europe’s institutions. This new meaning of Europe is already visible in cross-border citizens’ mobilisations, civil society networks, trade union struggles; it has now to shape Europe’s politics and policy-making.

 

Thirty years ago, at the start of the “New Cold War” between East and West, the Appeal for European Nuclear Disarmament launched the idea of a Europe free from military blocs and argued that “we must commence to act as if a united, neutral, pacific Europe already existed”. Now, in the midst of the crisis of finance, markets and bureaucracies, we we must commence to practice an egalitarian, peaceful, green and democratic Europe.

 

 

 

Rossana Rossanda, founder of Il Manifesto

Elmar Altvater, Attac Germany

Samir Amin, World Forum for Alternatives

Philippe Askenazy, CNRS-Paris school of Economics

Zygmunt Bauman, University of Leeds, UK

Seyla Benhabib, Yale University

Donatella Della Porta, European University Institute

Trevor Evans, Euromemorandum and Berlin School of Economics & Law

Luigi Ferrajoli, University of Roma Tre

Nancy Fraser, New School for Social Research, New York

Monica Frassoni, European Green Party

Susan George, honorary president of Attac France, Board President of the Transnational Institute

Paul Ginsborg, University of Florence

Rafael Grasa Hernandez, ICIP, Barcelona

Mary Kaldor, London School of Economics, UK

Thomas Lacoste, filmmaker and publisher, Paris

Dany Lang, Economistes atterrés

Maurizio Landini, secretary of the metalworkers’ union Fiom-Cgil

Jean-Louis Laville, European coordinator, Karl Polanyi Institute of Political Economy

Giulio Marcon, Coordinator of the Sbilanciamoci coalition

Jens Martens, Director, Global Policy Forum Europe

Doreen Massey, Open University and Soundings

Chantal Mouffe, University of Westminster, London

Heikki Patomäki, chair, ATTAC Finland and University of Helsinki

Pascal Petit, Université de Paris 13

Mario Pianta, University of Urbino and Sbilanciamoci

Kari Polanyi Levitt, McGill University, Montreal, Canada

Wolfgang Sachs, Wuppertal Institut, Germany

Saskia Sassen, Columbia University

Andrew Simms, fellow, New Economics Foundation, London

Steffen Stierle, scientific council Attac Germany

Massimo Torelli, Rete@sinistra

Peter Wahl, WEED,World Economy & Development Association, Germany

 

 

 

Vittorio Agnoletto, Freedom Legality And Rights in Europe

Sergio Andreis, Lunaria, Italy

Andrea Baranes, Roma

Marco Bersani, Attac Italia

Matthias Birkwald, Member of the German Parliament, Die Linke

Lothar Bisky, Member of the European Parliament, European United Left /Nordic Green Left, Germany

Raffaella Bolini, Arci, Italy

Luciana Castellina, former member of the European Parliament

Rolf Czezeskleba-Dupont, Roskilde University, Denmark

Pier Virgilio Dastoli, European Federalist Movement

Rosen Dimov, European Alternatives, Bulgaria

Mario Dogliani, University of Turin

Tommaso Fattori, Transform Italia

Renzo Fior, president Emmaus Italia

Maurizio Franzini, Sapienza Università di Roma

Marco Furfaro, Youth policy coordinator, SEL

Francesco Garibaldo, Associazione lavoro e libertà

Francuccio Gesualdi, Center for a new development

Alfonso Gianni, Roma

Chiara Giunti, Rete@sinistra

Thomas Händel, Member of the European Parliament, European United Left /Nordic Green Left, Germany

Keith Hart, University of Pretoria and Goldsmiths, University of London

Peter Hermann, scientific council Attac Germany, University of Cork

Peter Kammerer, University of Urbino

Jan Korte, Member of the German Parliament, Die Linke

Patrick Le Hyaric, Editor of L’Humanité, Member of the European Parliament, European United Left /Nordic Green Left, France

Flavio Lotti, Tavola della Pace, Perugia

Alberto Lucarelli, Commissioner of the City of Naples for the Common goods

Lorenzo Marsili, European Alternatives

Graziella Mascia, Associazione Altramente, Italy

Vilma Mazza, Global project

Luisa Morgantini, former vice-president of the European Parliament

Roberto Musacchio, Roma

Loretta Mussi, Un ponte per, Roma

Jason Nardi, coordinator, Social Watch Italian coalition

Maria Teresa Petrangolini, Active Citizenship Network

Maria Pia Pizzolante, TILT speakperson

Gabriele Polo, former editor, Il Manifesto

Norma Rangeri, editor, Il Manifesto

Angelo Reati, former official of the European Commission, Brussels

Claudio Riccio, Coordinator of student organisations

Gianni Rinaldini, Coordinator of the United for an alternative coalition, Italy

Tania Rispoli, social researcher and activist, Italy

Domenico Rizzuti, Rete@sinistra, Italy

Denis Jaromil Roio, Dyne.org, Free software foundry

Raül Romeva i Rueda, Member of the European Parliament, Green/EFA Group

Raffaele K. Salinari, Terre des Hommes international

Mariana Santos, Lisbon University Institute

Thomas Sauer, scientific council Attac Germany, Fachhochschule Jena.

Patrizia Sentinelli, former deputy minister of Foreign Affairs, Italy

Paul Schäfer, Member of the German Bundestag, Die Linke

Ingo Schmidt, Athabasca University, Canada

Annamaria Simonazzi, University of Rome “La Sapienza”

Claus Thomasberger, HTW Berlin, University of Applied Sciences

Antonio Tricarico, Roma

Guido Viale, environmental expert and activist, Italy

Luigi Vinci, Progetto Lavoro, Italy

Isidor Wallimann, scientific council Attac Germany, Fachhochschule Basel

Frieder Otto Wolf, former Member of the European Paliament, Freie Universität Berlin

Gaby Zimmer, Member of the European Parliament, European United Left /Nordic Green Left, Germany

 

 

 

May 2012

 

 

 

A preliminary version of this appeal was launched by the organisers and speakers of the Florence Forum “The way out. Europe and Italy, economic crisis and democracy”, held on 9 December 2011. The text is the result of extensive discussions with European networks and individuals and groups in many European countries. The text is available in English, Italian, French, German and Spanish. You can sign the Appeal on the website www.anotherroadforeurope.org

 

On June 28, 2012, a Forum on “Another Road for Europe” will be held at the European Parliament in Brussels. For information, support for the Appeal, and participation to the Brussels Forum: anotherroadforeurope@gmail.com – www.anotherroadforeurope.org

 

 

 

Action: Say no to the attack on social and democratic rights in Europe!

The euro crisis has become the occasion to set up a neoliberal “economic governance” which will impose austerity measures in the different European countries for the next years. At the same time, here the European Commission will be given enormous power to implement burdensome financial sanctions on countries which do not adopt such painful measures.

European organisations are campaigning to stop the attack on social and democratic rights in Europe!

JOIN THE E-ACTION

READ MORE about the EU’s Economic Governance package and the campaign to stop it

Call for a just transition movement in Europe

System change, pills not climate change!
A just transition towards a good life for all

European Social Forum, Istanbul, 4 July 2010

The newspapers may speak of financial and economic crises, but when we look around ourselves, we don’t see derivates and financial markets – what we see is the destruction of communities, of our social and natural environments, of our relations to each other. What we see is capitalism destroying us. Against this destruction, and the austerity that follows in its wake, people are resisting, people are fighting back, people are beginning to create the new worlds we know to be necessary: from Ghana to Greece, from Copenhagen to Cochabamba, from Bangkok to Brussels. We from climate and social justice movements gathered at the European Social Forum in Istanbul, are a part of and inspired by these global processes of resistance and creation, but also realise that we need to fight where we stand: to create another world, we also need to create another Europe and tear down the walls of the fortress that surround it.

Against those who try to create divisions between social and ecological justice, we assert that they do not contradict each other. They are and have to be complementary. Our vision is of a good life for all, not a nightmare of authoritarian eco-austerity.

Against those who oppose people’s desire to have good and well-paid jobs and to move beyond the madness of infinite growth on a finite planet, we are calling for a just transition in the way we work, in the structures of production and consumption. While there are many things we need more of, there is much we need less of. For example, we need to stop the destructive energy production practices involving coal, oil, nuclear and hydropower, or to end the madness of building individual cars for everybody. At the same time, we need to expand community-controlled renewable energies, food sovereignty as well as public services that contribute to our goal of a good life for all, like free public transport, health, housing and education. This would create millions of socially and ecologically useful jobs.

This is what we mean by just transition, by climate justice: it does not mean having the ‘right’ position on what is being negotiated at UN-climate summits. It’s not about parts per million of carbon in the atmosphere. Although it is important to change our individual behaviours, climate justice is about fundamentally changing our model of production and consumption of food, goods, energy, of our entire lives. It is about finally making amends for the ecological debt we owe the rest of the world.

We in Europe are only now starting on the road towards climate justice, creating and resisting in many different ways, such as direct action, the building of local alternatives, civil disobedience or public campaigning to name a few. There are many opportunities already such as:

26/8: solidarity actions coinciding with the trial in Copenhagen of Tash Verco and Noah Weiss

Summer 2010 : Climate and No Border camps are happening all over Europe

29/9: European trade union day of action

between the 10th and the 17th of October, different networks are calling for action on climate justice: the 12th will be a day of direct action for climate justice; the 16th a day of action against Monsanto

From the 29th of November to the 10th of December, the 16th UN-climate summit will be held in Cancun, Mexico: we will be creating a ‘thousand Cancuns’ to protest their false solutions and point the way towards real climate and social justice.


CALL TO ACTION: Regulate Global Finance Now!


“Forum Social Europe – European Network of Trade Unionists” (FSE) met in Brussels on 9-10 June to discuss the political and social consequences of the economic crisis in Europe and the need for trade unions and other social forces to respond.

The meeting heard reports from a number of countries, among them Greece, Spain, Bulgaria, Ireland, Italy and Portugal. In all these countries, and in many others, trade unions, workers and people in general have experienced forceful attacks on wages, working conditions, public services and social benefits – unemployment has grown and poverty has increased. In many countries national collective agreements, pensions and trade union rights have been considerably cut and weakened – not through negotiations with trade unions, but through government decrees.

In this way, governments, employers, European institutions and the International Monetary Fund are trying to make workers pay for the effects of the financial an economic crisis, even though we have no responsibility for the neo-liberal policies, the redistribution of wealth from the bottom to the top and the speculation economy which have created the crisis. The situation is dramatic. If we are not able to stop this development, the trade union and labour movement may possibly face a historic defeat in Europe.

The situation calls for massive mobilisation across Europe to prevent such a defeat. The FSE network therefore appeals to our colleagues in Europe and to all trade unions to take immediate and co-ordinated actions to prevent such a defeat.

We propose:

  • A comprehensive information campaign to inform workers all over Europe on concrete developments in each country in order to prevent workers from being played out against each other.
  • To mobilise and organise support across Europe to workers who decide to take the fight against austerity programmes and attacks on wages, workings conditions, pensions and social programmes. Their struggle is our struggle.
  • To organise as soon as possible a European workers’ conference to strengthen our resistance and to discuss our situation and develop demands, alternatives and strategies to replace the failed neo-liberal policies and abolish all forms of financial speculation – to create jobs and to change to an environmentally and socially sustainable economy in Europe.
  • To initiate a debate in the European trade union movement on how to change the policies and approach of the trade unions to adopt them to the new, more aggressive attitudes of the employers, to activate the members, to strengthen the international perspective and co-ordination and to prepare our unions for harder confrontations as a result of the attacks from employers, governments and financial capital.
  • That the manifestation planned for 29 September 2010 should be organised as an all-European event, with demonstrations in several capitals and a main manifestation in Brussels.


“Forum Social Europe – European Network of Trade Unionists”

“Forum Social Europe” is a network of left wing trade unionists from several European countries, founded 12 years ago. The starting point was the fact that living and working conditions are increasingly influenced by European policy and that trade unions do not influence this process sufficiently. The aim of the Forum is to encourage a broad societal debate about the development of Europe and European policy in order to design a political alternative to the dominant neo-liberal logic. This will also contribute to European trade unions becoming a strong movement overcoming their institutional and national barriers. The members of the Forum are convinced that a strong and autonomous trade union movement is indispensable for the creation of a social Europe. We support a process of social development of Europe in which the employees and their unions are protagonists – in accordance with our conviction that the unions have to be a movement in the first place and should not be constrained by institutional limits.

Contact person:

Horst Schmitthenner

E-mail: Horst.Schmitthenner@igmetall.de


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“Forum Social Europe – European Network of Trade Unionists” (FSE) met in Brussels on 9-10 June to discuss the political and social consequences of the economic crisis in Europe and the need for trade unions and other social forces to respond.

The meeting heard reports from a number of countries, among them Greece, Spain, Bulgaria, Ireland, Italy and Portugal. In all these countries, and in many others, trade unions, workers and people in general have experienced forceful attacks on wages, working conditions, public services and social benefits – unemployment has grown and poverty has increased. In many countries national collective agreements, pensions and trade union rights have been considerably cut and weakened – not through negotiations with trade unions, but through government decrees.

In this way, governments, employers, European institutions and the International Monetary Fund are trying to make workers pay for the effects of the financial an economic crisis, even though we have no responsibility for the neo-liberal policies, the redistribution of wealth from the bottom to the top and the speculation economy which have created the crisis. The situation is dramatic. If we are not able to stop this development, the trade union and labour movement may possibly face a historic defeat in Europe.

The situation calls for massive mobilisation across Europe to prevent such a defeat. The FSE network therefore appeals to our colleagues in Europe and to all trade unions to take immediate and co-ordinated actions to prevent such a defeat.

We propose:

  • A comprehensive information campaign to inform workers all over Europe on concrete developments in each country in order to prevent workers from being played out against each other.
  • To mobilise and organise support across Europe to workers who decide to take the fight against austerity programmes and attacks on wages, workings conditions, pensions and social programmes. Their struggle is our struggle.
  • To organise as soon as possible a European workers’ conference to strengthen our resistance and to discuss our situation and develop demands, alternatives and strategies to replace the failed neo-liberal policies and abolish all forms of financial speculation – to create jobs and to change to an environmentally and socially sustainable economy in Europe.
  • To initiate a debate in the European trade union movement on how to change the policies and approach of the trade unions to adopt them to the new, more aggressive attitudes of the employers, to activate the members, to strengthen the international perspective and co-ordination and to prepare our unions for harder confrontations as a result of the attacks from employers, governments and financial capital.
  • That the manifestation planned for 29 September 2010 should be organised as an all-European event, with demonstrations in several capitals and a main manifestation in Brussels.


“Forum Social Europe – European Network of Trade Unionists”

“Forum Social Europe” is a network of left wing trade unionists from several European countries, founded 12 years ago. The starting point was the fact that living and working conditions are increasingly influenced by European policy and that trade unions do not influence this process sufficiently. The aim of the Forum is to encourage a broad societal debate about the development of Europe and European policy in order to design a political alternative to the dominant neo-liberal logic. This will also contribute to European trade unions becoming a strong movement overcoming their institutional and national barriers. The members of the Forum are convinced that a strong and autonomous trade union movement is indispensable for the creation of a social Europe. We support a process of social development of Europe in which the employees and their unions are protagonists – in accordance with our conviction that the unions have to be a movement in the first place and should not be constrained by institutional limits.

Contact person:

Horst Schmitthenner

E-mail: Horst.Schmitthenner@igmetall.de

The global financial crisis is spilling over into our lives, there threatening jobs, savings, pensions and public services everywhere! Today’s crisis isn’t just another economic downturn – it’s a systemic crisis bursting across the globe: a crisis of unregulated financial markets driven by neoliberal ideology that have sold out long-term investment, jobs, wages, the environment and the general well-being of the planet and its people for the benefit of a few.

It’s time for citizens around Europe to raise our voices and demand that the fundamental causes of this crisis be addressed! We need tough rules to stop the financiers’ folly, and a new framework that better serves the public interest. Equality, social justice and solidarity should be considered as our core global values. It’s urgent that we increase the level of democracy, transparency and accountability of the institutions dealing with financial regulation and supervision. Our vision of the financial system we want is clear: we want to create well-functioning and efficient financial markets that are capable of providing long-term, green, job-creating investments to achieve global development.

To European leaders :

Finance must become a global public good, and should be designed to serve the real economy! Both in Europe and globally we need more than just new regulations – we have to put the financial system at the service of people’s interests.

We urge you to take the lead in fixing the fundamental flaws and loopholes which made the global financial crisis possible in the first place.

We need you to work together to protect the public good by framing stronger rules for all parts of the global financial system.

We expect you to be accountable to the people in solving the crisis. The time for self-regulation is over. Therefore, we urge you to take the following actions as soon as possible:

· Regulate speculative funds, such as hedge funds and private equity funds. We urge you to come forward with a comprehensive, far-reaching, effective regulation – as soon as possible!

Financial institutions making up the “shadow banking system” created a massive gambling den at the heart of the global financial casino. Hedge funds and private equity funds flourished in the shadows, far from the sunlight of regulation. In the coming months, the European leaders will have to decide on the future of our financial system, and more specifically on the future of hedge funds and private equity. In April 2009, the European Commission proposed a piece of legislation to regulate hedge funds and private equity: the so-called “Alternative Investment Funds Managers” (AIFM) directive. European governments and Members of the European Parliament now have to decide whether to introduce effective regulation of speculative funds or not.

· Create a financial transaction tax.

In response to the current crisis, governments around the world have been stabilizing and protecting their economies and jobs with taxpayers’ money. Many citizens ask themselves: Who’s going to pay the bill for this? Are taxpayers the only ones to pay, or will financial markets and investment bankers be held accountable to pay parts of the burden? Taxing the financial sector would enhance fairness. Moreover, this will increase government revenue, which is badly needed to support the transition towards more inclusive, fairer and cleaner societies. While dumping purely speculative, socially useless activities, a financial transaction tax would promote the sustainable, long-term investments that are needed to green our economies. And last but not least, global financial transaction tax of 0.05% could yield revenue of about 1% of nominal world GDP per year. This would provide funding for long-term public investments, to finance global development and climate change. Only through such policies can solidarity at a global level be enhanced.

· Control over executive & shareholder bonus and remuneration.

A culture of massive bonuses has encouraged reckless risk taking and has had a pernicious economic effect, all while making social inequity worse. Remuneration schemes must be regulated by law to reflect and promote long-term economic, social and environmental performance and allow companies to allocate profits to the companies’ productive and job-creating activities. Remuneration of management and traders should be capped in line with workers’ pay and pensions and, in the case of financial services, linked to responsible sales and lending practices. The cashing-in of bonuses and other performance-related schemes within five years should be prohibited. And last but not least, shareholders must be prevented from plundering the wealth of companies during growth times through dividends and ‘share buy-back’ programmes, which leave companies with undercapitalised balance sheets during economic downturns.

· Close down tax havens.

Citizens pay taxes. Companies — including financial institutions that have been bailed out by the taxpayer — employ the best accountants in town to use tax havens to avoid tax. One fund manager admitted he paid less tax than his cleaning lady! It’s unfair and unacceptable. The existence of tax havens also encourages capital flight and tax evasion, especially in developing countries. The money lost to tax havens could help plug the hole in the public finances and create tens of thousands of jobs. We want to bring tax havens, offshore financial centres (OFCs) and bank secrecy jurisdictions in line with international standards. Automatic exchange of information, a proper multilateral agreement and strong sanctions against non-compliant territories and users are key in seriously addressing this problem.

· Protect consumers against toxic financial products and predatory lending.

The crisis has shown that toxic financial products can spread an economic virus with devastating economic and social consequences. Citizens need to be protected from high risk financial products and misguiding credit lending practices in the same way that they are protected against risky drugs and a financial consumer protection agency needs to be established. Bank employees should be able to give good advice to consumers.

· Democratize finance.

We can no longer let central bankers and lobbyists from the industry decide alone on regulations and accounting standards. Social partners and civil society organisations need to have a far stronger say in the decision-making process!

At the European level, trade unions and civil society organisations must have a seat on the European Systemic Risk Board, as well as on the European supervisory bodies. International institutions such as the Financial Stability Board (FSB) or the IMF should give civil society organisations and trade unions a consultative status. The FSB and the IMF should publish their draft reports on their website for public input and comment.

The crisis must provide the trigger for a wholesale reform of the global economic order into a new, fair, transparent global financial system, and the EU governments and the European institutions must act now to achieve sustainable development, social justice and a new respect for the planet.

Are you committed to our goals? Sign up!

To add your voice, click here: http://europeansforfinancialreform.org/en/petition/regulate-global-finance-now

 

Europeans for financial reform is a coalition of progressive forces, ranging from NGOs to Trade Unions, citizens, academics and progressive politicians, that have come together to spearhead a campaign for real reform in our banking and financial system. The campaign was launched on September 21st 2009, and the coalition is growing, with new members joining our campaign every day (http://europeansforfinancialreform.org/en/user/register).

Statement of the “Forum Social Europe–European Network of Trade Unionists”

Covernote of the “European Food declaration”
We are a broad range of organisations -see list in “who are we”- – who are concerned with the future of food and agriculture in Europe. As in other regions in the world, approved the number of people and organizations that are working towards a fairer, more inclusive and sustainable food system is growing. Many of them are actively engaged in building a viable alternative to the current food production, distribution and consumption – from the bottom up. This new system of food and agriculture is firmly grounded on equity, the universal right to food, good governance and transparency.
A wide range of renewed activities such as increasing local food production, local markets, local procurement, seed swaps and so on has been emerging and growing across Europe. In addition new movements, such as the Transition Town movement, GM-free regions and national and local debates on food policy show increasing public support for another form of food and agriculture.
Yet, grassroots activities and local movements are not enough. We believe it is time to build a broad coalition of groups at the European level to challenge the current Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) and the European Commission’s and our governments’ avowed plans for a renewed CAP in 2013. Their vision is, to keep the global ‘competitiveness’ of Europe’s food industry as the chief objective of Europe’s CAP. The political process for the new CAP 2013 is starting now. We believe a strong message is needed, not only for EU policy makers, but for policy makers in our countries – a vision for a CAP suitable for the 21st century.
We have created a “European Food Declaration: towards a healthy, sustainable, fair and mutually supportive Common Agriculture and Food Policy”. It outlines what we think the policy objectives of a CAP for the next decades should be. We invite as many organizations, groups and individuals as possible to sign this declaration and to use it as a tool to promote the discussion about what kind of food and agriculture policy we need. We also ask you to share this declaration with other grassroots, civil society, environment and food organisations that are actively engaged in building a better food system.
Our aim is to collect as many signatures within our different networks before the end of February 2010. Early February, we will invite the public to sign the declaration.
This declaration is the first step in our efforts to build a broad movement for change towards food sovereignty policies and practices in Europe, including the EU. We are also planning a Europe-wide forum in 2011 for people and organisations who are concerned about these issues and who would like to join forces in order to reach our common objectives together. If you are interested to be involved in the preparation of that forum or could help us to organise that forum please contact us.
European Food declaration
We, the undersigned, believe that the European Union needs to meet the urgent challenges Europe is facing regarding food and agriculture.
After more than a half-century of industrialisation of agriculture and food production, sustainable family farming and local food cultures have been substantially reduced in Europe. Today, our food system is dependent on under-priced fossil fuels, does not recognize the limitations of water and land resources, and supports unhealthy diets high in calories, fat and salt, and low in fruit, vegetables and grains. Looking ahead, rising energy costs, drastic losses in biodiversity, climate change and declining water and land resources threaten the future of food production. At the same time, a growing world population faces the potential dual burden of widespread hunger and chronic diseases due to overconsumption.
We will only be able to address these challenges successfully with a completely different approach to food and agriculture policies and practices. The European Union must recognize and support the crucial role of sustainable family farming in the food supply of the population. All people should have access to healthy, safe, and nutritious food. The ways in which we grow, distribute, prepare and eat food should celebrate Europe’s cultural diversity, providing sustenance equitably and sustainably.
The present Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) is currently being debated and is due for change in 2013. After decades of the domination by transnational corporations and the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in determining food and agriculture policy, it is time for people in Europe to re-appropriate agriculture and food policy: it is time for food sovereignty. We believe a new Common Food and Agriculture Policy should guarantee and protect citizens’ space in the EU and candidate countries and their ability and right to define their own models of production, distribution and consumption following the principles outlined below.
The new Common Food and Agriculture Policy:
1. considers food as a universal human right, not merely a commodity.
2. gives priority to growing food and feed for Europe and changes international trade in agricultural products according to principles of equity, social justice and ecological sustainability. The CAP should not harm other countries’ food and agriculture systems.
3. promotes healthy eating patterns, moving towards plant-based diets and towards a reduced consumption of meat, energy-dense and highly processed foods, and saturated fats, while respecting the regional cultural dietary habits and traditions.
4. gives priority to maintaining an agriculture all over Europe that involves numerous farmers producing food and caring for the countryside. That is not achievable without fair and secure farm prices, which should allow a fair income for farmers and agricultural workers, and fair prices for consumers.
5. ensures fair, non-discriminatory conditions for farmers and agricultural workers in Central and Eastern Europe, and promotes a fair and equitable access to land.
6. respects the local and global environment, protects the finite resources of soil and water, increases biodiversity and respects animal welfare.
7. guarantees that agriculture and food production remain free from GMOs and fosters farmers’ seeds and the diversity of domestic livestock species, building on local knowledge.
8. stops promoting the use and the production of industrial agrofuels and gives priority to the reduction of transport in general.
9. ensures transparency along the food chain so that citizens know how their food is produced, where it comes from, what it contains and what is included in the price paid by consumers.
10. reduces the concentration of power in the agricultural, food processing and retail sectors and their influence on what is produced and consumed, and promotes food systems that shorten the distance between farmers and consumers.
11. encourages the production and consumption of local, seasonal, high quality products reconnecting citizens with their food and food producers.
12. devotes resources to teaching children the skills and knowledge required to produce, prepare, and enjoy healthy, nutritious food.
View list of signatures and sign the Declaration

People’s SAARC 2010

Seminar on the Right to Repartition of Bhutanese Refugees: Sharing testimonies by Bhutanese refugees with south Asian representatives

25-26 April 2010, Birtamod, online Jhapa, Nepal

Organized by: South Asia Alliance for Poverty Eradication (SAAPE) and the Bhutanese  Refugees Repatriation Committee

We, more than 50 Bhutanese refugees representing all seven refugee camps located in Jhapa and Morang districts of Nepal and the members of SAAPE from Bangladesh, India and Nepal, and peasant organisations, academia, women associations and social movements from different countries of South Asia have gathered here in Birtamod, Jhapa on April 25, 2010 on the occasion of People’s SAARC 2010 to defend the rights of Bhutanese refugees. As an extension of People’s SAARC 2010 Delhi, India, this one day seminar has come up with the following realizations and demands: During our visit to the camps we found the citizens of Bhutan living under total deprivation and in de humanized conditions. This is a situation which must not be allowed to continue and demands immediate all round intervention to ensure that all basic entitlements are made available without any further delay or prevarication,

1. Thousands of Bhutanese citizens have been evicted from their homeland by way of political victimization and intolerance for the voice of democratic dissent and forced to live as political refugees on the borders of India and Bhutan and the refugee camps of Nepal;

2. This illegality and immorality have been perpetuated for more than 18 years against the norms and standards of international law and violation of human rights;

3. It is high time for south Asian countries to bring pressure on the government of Bhutan to allow the rights of the refugees to return to their homelands and to facilitate their repatriation with full dignity, honour and the right to equality and full participation as citizens of Bhutan;

4. We, on behalf of people of the South Asian nations, demand that this issue be taken up on the agenda of official SAARC and an urgent solution found to this aggravated humanitarian emergency prevailing along the borders of south asia, even as the heads of the governments engage in empty tokenism in the capital of Bhutan, thus bestowing legitimacy to an anti-people and anti-democratic government;

5. We also demand an immediate end to the suppression of the democratic rights of these refugees and the gross violation of their civil and political rights;

6. We demand for the formation of South Asia Refugee Commission within the framework of SAARC to engage and take care of the refugee problems in the region;

7. We take note of the inadequacy of third country resettlement of Bhutanese refugees;

8. We urge the South Asian governments, particularly India, Bhutan and Nepal to address the Bhutanese refugee’s demands to return to their homeland. We request international community to facilitate the process of repatriation to their homelands;

9. We urge that all South Asian nations follow the lead of Afghanistan and ratify the 1951 UN Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and enact suitable legal framework to address the problems of the refugees; and

10. Finally we commit ourselves to continue activities to make South Asia a refugee free region. We believe in solidarity, fraternity and mutual respect for all.


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People’s SAARC 2010

Seminar on the Right to Repartition of Bhutanese Refugees: Sharing testimonies by Bhutanese refugees with south Asian representatives

25-26 April 2010, Birtamod, Jhapa, Nepal

Organized by: South Asia Alliance for Poverty Eradication (SAAPE) and the Bhutanese  Refugees Repatriation Committee

We, more than 50 Bhutanese refugees representing all seven refugee camps located in Jhapa and Morang districts of Nepal and the members of SAAPE from Bangladesh, India and Nepal, and peasant organisations, academia, women associations and social movements from different countries of South Asia have gathered here in Birtamod, Jhapa on April 25, 2010 on the occasion of People’s SAARC 2010 to defend the rights of Bhutanese refugees. As an extension of People’s SAARC 2010 Delhi, India, this one day seminar has come up with the following realizations and demands: During our visit to the camps we found the citizens of Bhutan living under total deprivation and in de humanized conditions. This is a situation which must not be allowed to continue and demands immediate all round intervention to ensure that all basic entitlements are made available without any further delay or prevarication,

1. Thousands of Bhutanese citizens have been evicted from their homeland by way of political victimization and intolerance for the voice of democratic dissent and forced to live as political refugees on the borders of India and Bhutan and the refugee camps of Nepal;

2. This illegality and immorality have been perpetuated for more than 18 years against the norms and standards of international law and violation of human rights;

3. It is high time for south Asian countries to bring pressure on the government of Bhutan to allow the rights of the refugees to return to their homelands and to facilitate their repatriation with full dignity, honour and the right to equality and full participation as citizens of Bhutan;

4. We, on behalf of people of the South Asian nations, demand that this issue be taken up on the agenda of official SAARC and an urgent solution found to this aggravated humanitarian emergency prevailing along the borders of south asia, even as the heads of the governments engage in empty tokenism in the capital of Bhutan, thus bestowing legitimacy to an anti-people and anti-democratic government;

5. We also demand an immediate end to the suppression of the democratic rights of these refugees and the gross violation of their civil and political rights;

6. We demand for the formation of South Asia Refugee Commission within the framework of SAARC to engage and take care of the refugee problems in the region;

7. We take note of the inadequacy of third country resettlement of Bhutanese refugees;

8. We urge the South Asian governments, particularly India, Bhutan and Nepal to address the Bhutanese refugee’s demands to return to their homeland. We request international community to facilitate the process of repatriation to their homelands;

9. We urge that all South Asian nations follow the lead of Afghanistan and ratify the 1951 UN Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and enact suitable legal framework to address the problems of the refugees; and

10. Finally we commit ourselves to continue activities to make South Asia a refugee free region. We believe in solidarity, fraternity and mutual respect for all.


“Forum Social Europe – European Network of Trade Unionists” (FSE) met in Brussels on 9-10 June to discuss the political and social consequences of the economic crisis in Europe and the need for trade unions and other social forces to respond.

The meeting heard reports from a number of countries, for sale among them Greece, purchase Spain, Bulgaria, Ireland, Italy and Portugal. In all these countries, and in many others, trade unions, workers and people in general have experienced forceful attacks on wages, working conditions, public services and social benefits – unemployment has grown and poverty has increased. In many countries national collective agreements, pensions and trade union rights have been considerably cut and weakened – not through negotiations with trade unions, but through government decrees.

In this way, governments, employers, European institutions and the International Monetary Fund are trying to make workers pay for the effects of the financial an economic crisis, even though we have no responsibility for the neo-liberal policies, the redistribution of wealth from the bottom to the top and the speculation economy which have created the crisis. The situation is dramatic. If we are not able to stop this development, the trade union and labour movement may possibly face a historic defeat in Europe.

The situation calls for massive mobilisation across Europe to prevent such a defeat. The FSE network therefore appeals to our colleagues in Europe and to all trade unions to take immediate and co-ordinated actions to prevent such a defeat.

We propose:

  • A comprehensive information campaign to inform workers all over Europe on concrete developments in each country in order to prevent workers from being played out against each other.
  • To mobilise and organise support across Europe to workers who decide to take the fight against austerity programmes and attacks on wages, workings conditions, pensions and social programmes. Their struggle is our struggle.
  • To organise as soon as possible a European workers’ conference to strengthen our resistance and to discuss our situation and develop demands, alternatives and strategies to replace the failed neo-liberal policies and abolish all forms of financial speculation – to create jobs and to change to an environmentally and socially sustainable economy in Europe.
  • To initiate a debate in the European trade union movement on how to change the policies and approach of the trade unions to adopt them to the new, more aggressive attitudes of the employers, to activate the members, to strengthen the international perspective and co-ordination and to prepare our unions for harder confrontations as a result of the attacks from employers, governments and financial capital.
  • That the manifestation planned for 29 September 2010 should be organised as an all-European event, with demonstrations in several capitals and a main manifestation in Brussels.


“Forum Social Europe – European Network of Trade Unionists”

“Forum Social Europe” is a network of left wing trade unionists from several European countries, founded 12 years ago. The starting point was the fact that living and working conditions are increasingly influenced by European policy and that trade unions do not influence this process sufficiently. The aim of the Forum is to encourage a broad societal debate about the development of Europe and European policy in order to design a political alternative to the dominant neo-liberal logic. This will also contribute to European trade unions becoming a strong movement overcoming their institutional and national barriers. The members of the Forum are convinced that a strong and autonomous trade union movement is indispensable for the creation of a social Europe. We support a process of social development of Europe in which the employees and their unions are protagonists – in accordance with our conviction that the unions have to be a movement in the first place and should not be constrained by institutional limits.

Contact person:

Horst Schmitthenner

E-mail: Horst.Schmitthenner@igmetall.de

A EUROPEAN APPEAL: The peoples or the Financial markets? The governments and the E.U. must choose!

The Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) summit will be over by the time these lines appear in print. But we can say that it was another attempt to scale the mountain of difficulties.

The 15th people’s Saarc meeting was held in Delhi recently to impress upon the participants of the official Saarc summit in Thimpu, diagnosis Bhutan, order that South Asian countries will continue to lag behind in development until they realise the meaning of cooperation.

Representatives of human rights bodies, thumb trade unions, women groups and others from the Saarc countries — Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Pakistan, Nepal, the Maldives and Sri Lanka — demanded a union of South Asian countries in the manner of the European Union, while retaining their individual identity and sovereignty. Some even saw the prospects of one market, one visa and one currency. The representatives (60 from Pakistan alone) “reaffirmed the South Asian people’s commitment to creating a South Asia free from all discrimination, exclusion and domination”.

Indeed, these are lofty ideals that are worth pursuing. The participants were not only passionate about them, they were also committed to rising above nationalism and parochialism to make the dream of a South Asia Union come true. Their speeches had no rancour, no bitterness and no allegation.

All the eight countries are different in their own way. Yet many of them were ruled by foreigners which has cast their outlook in a civilisational mould, reflecting their commonality. Unfortunately, they a seek solution to their basic problems, not from within the region but from outside.

This dependence is the fallout of their slavery. The British who ruled practically the entire region were ruthless masters. They used people in the region as brick and mortar to build the structure of their empire. Any big or odd stone that did not fit in was crushed or thrown aside. Not many rose to challenge the system. The efforts of the few who did were nipped in the bud. Others were eliminated.

Still this region, with its people of different traditions, defeated the British. In their journey towards independence, they fell and rose but reached their destination. It is a saga of suffering and sacrifice which is recalled even today.

South Asia has learned the lesson that every enslaved country does from humiliation. But what it has not learnt yet is that people have to make a joint effort to overcome problems. Together they can fight to determine the path they should take, the tactics they should adopt and the allies they should seek. All this demands an understanding that they are together. This cannot be assumed. A method has to be devised to ascertain their opinion, yes or no.

What do the people think? What do the participants in the struggle for the betterment of conditions feel? Their efforts sow the seed of accountability. If some are to be made answerable, they should have the powers to act. Who should such people be? How can they be spotted? Centuries ago, the English established themselves as the world’s supreme nation against rival claimants. Since then the idea of popular sovereignty has become an integral part of civilised governments. Some nations like France learned from England’s example.

We in South Asia are a watchful people. We were determined to throw out the yoke of foreign rule. We also wanted to devise a system to rule ourselves. Our experience was all that the British taught us — the different acts under which carefully selected people would come to the assemblies and parliaments to rule. Very few came directly elected by the people. That was our democratic system. Our struggle in different parts of the region was to have more and more elected representatives.

We shed each other’s blood, although we were independent. The subcontinent of India was partitioned into India and Pakistan on the basis of religion. When the constitution in the newly independent countries was framed, the people’s say was naturally the most.

The biggest achievement of the constitution was to keep the rights of the people supreme and to ensure that the nations did not substitute white masters with brown sahibs.

It was not a question of government alone. It was also a question of the constitutional guarantee whereby sovereignty stayed with the people. And does democracy mean only going to polling booths and registering votes? The answer to such questions may be able to tell whether democracy will survive in South Asia.

The people’s wishes — and prayers — would have yielded some results by this time had the hostility between India and Pakistan been overcome. Neither India nor Pakistan has been able to overcome the differences which go back a long way. In a way, it is the same old bias between Hindus and Muslims. Parochialism spoils the thinking of secular India when it comes to Pakistan. On the other hand, Pakistan has never adopted secularism even after Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s declaration that the state would have nothing to do with religion.

Between August 1947 and 2010, the two countries have engaged in three wars, apart from militaristic stances over the Rann of Kutch, Siachen and Kargil. Both are also nuclear powers. Still they love to hate each other. Kashmir and water are symptoms, not the disease.

The disease is the bias, suspicion and mistrust which appear in one form or the other. Even if one issue was to be solved, another would rear its ugly head because of the fundamental Hindu-Muslim divide. How do the two nations get away from this posture? The sooner we find an answer to this question, the stronger will be Saarc.

The writer is a senior journalist based in New Delhi.The Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) summit will be over by the time these lines appear in print. But we can say that it was another attempt to scale the mountain of difficulties.

The 15th people’s Saarc meeting was held in Delhi recently to impress upon the participants of the official Saarc summit in Thimpu, Bhutan, that South Asian countries will continue to lag behind in development until they realise the meaning of cooperation.

Representatives of human rights bodies, trade unions, women groups and others from the Saarc countries — Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Pakistan, Nepal, the Maldives and Sri Lanka — demanded a union of South Asian countries in the manner of the European Union, while retaining their individual identity and sovereignty. Some even saw the prospects of one market, one visa and one currency. The representatives (60 from Pakistan alone) “reaffirmed the South Asian people’s commitment to creating a South Asia free from all discrimination, exclusion and domination”.

Indeed, these are lofty ideals that are worth pursuing. The participants were not only passionate about them, they were also committed to rising above nationalism and parochialism to make the dream of a South Asia Union come true. Their speeches had no rancour, no bitterness and no allegation.

All the eight countries are different in their own way. Yet many of them were ruled by foreigners which has cast their outlook in a civilisational mould, reflecting their commonality. Unfortunately, they a seek solution to their basic problems, not from within the region but from outside.

This dependence is the fallout of their slavery. The British who ruled practically the entire region were ruthless masters. They used people in the region as brick and mortar to build the structure of their empire. Any big or odd stone that did not fit in was crushed or thrown aside. Not many rose to challenge the system. The efforts of the few who did were nipped in the bud. Others were eliminated.

Still this region, with its people of different traditions, defeated the British. In their journey towards independence, they fell and rose but reached their destination. It is a saga of suffering and sacrifice which is recalled even today.

South Asia has learned the lesson that every enslaved country does from humiliation. But what it has not learnt yet is that people have to make a joint effort to overcome problems. Together they can fight to determine the path they should take, the tactics they should adopt and the allies they should seek. All this demands an understanding that they are together. This cannot be assumed. A method has to be devised to ascertain their opinion, yes or no.

What do the people think? What do the participants in the struggle for the betterment of conditions feel? Their efforts sow the seed of accountability. If some are to be made answerable, they should have the powers to act. Who should such people be? How can they be spotted? Centuries ago, the English established themselves as the world’s supreme nation against rival claimants. Since then the idea of popular sovereignty has become an integral part of civilised governments. Some nations like France learned from England’s example.

We in South Asia are a watchful people. We were determined to throw out the yoke of foreign rule. We also wanted to devise a system to rule ourselves. Our experience was all that the British taught us — the different acts under which carefully selected people would come to the assemblies and parliaments to rule. Very few came directly elected by the people. That was our democratic system. Our struggle in different parts of the region was to have more and more elected representatives.

We shed each other’s blood, although we were independent. The subcontinent of India was partitioned into India and Pakistan on the basis of religion. When the constitution in the newly independent countries was framed, the people’s say was naturally the most.

The biggest achievement of the constitution was to keep the rights of the people supreme and to ensure that the nations did not substitute white masters with brown sahibs.

It was not a question of government alone. It was also a question of the constitutional guarantee whereby sovereignty stayed with the people. And does democracy mean only going to polling booths and registering votes? The answer to such questions may be able to tell whether democracy will survive in South Asia.

The people’s wishes — and prayers — would have yielded some results by this time had the hostility between India and Pakistan been overcome. Neither India nor Pakistan has been able to overcome the differences which go back a long way. In a way, it is the same old bias between Hindus and Muslims. Parochialism spoils the thinking of secular India when it comes to Pakistan. On the other hand, Pakistan has never adopted secularism even after Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s declaration that the state would have nothing to do with religion.

Between August 1947 and 2010, the two countries have engaged in three wars, apart from militaristic stances over the Rann of Kutch, Siachen and Kargil. Both are also nuclear powers. Still they love to hate each other. Kashmir and water are symptoms, not the disease.

The disease is the bias, suspicion and mistrust which appear in one form or the other. Even if one issue was to be solved, another would rear its ugly head because of the fundamental Hindu-Muslim divide. How do the two nations get away from this posture? The sooner we find an answer to this question, the stronger will be Saarc.

The writer is a senior journalist based in New Delhi.

The Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) summit will be over by the time these lines appear in print. But we can say that it was another attempt to scale the mountain of difficulties.

The 15th people’s Saarc meeting was held in Delhi recently to impress upon the participants of the official Saarc summit in Thimpu, ask Bhutan, that South Asian countries will continue to lag behind in development until they realise the meaning of cooperation.

Representatives of human rights bodies, order trade unions, women groups and others from the Saarc countries — Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Pakistan, Nepal, the Maldives and Sri Lanka — demanded a union of South Asian countries in the manner of the European Union, while retaining their individual identity and sovereignty. Some even saw the prospects of one market, one visa and one currency. The representatives (60 from Pakistan alone) “reaffirmed the South Asian people’s commitment to creating a South Asia free from all discrimination, exclusion and domination”.

Indeed, these are lofty ideals that are worth pursuing. The participants were not only passionate about them, they were also committed to rising above nationalism and parochialism to make the dream of a South Asia Union come true. Their speeches had no rancour, no bitterness and no allegation.

All the eight countries are different in their own way. Yet many of them were ruled by foreigners which has cast their outlook in a civilisational mould, reflecting their commonality. Unfortunately, they a seek solution to their basic problems, not from within the region but from outside.

This dependence is the fallout of their slavery. The British who ruled practically the entire region were ruthless masters. They used people in the region as brick and mortar to build the structure of their empire. Any big or odd stone that did not fit in was crushed or thrown aside. Not many rose to challenge the system. The efforts of the few who did were nipped in the bud. Others were eliminated.

Still this region, with its people of different traditions, defeated the British. In their journey towards independence, they fell and rose but reached their destination. It is a saga of suffering and sacrifice which is recalled even today.

South Asia has learned the lesson that every enslaved country does from humiliation. But what it has not learnt yet is that people have to make a joint effort to overcome problems. Together they can fight to determine the path they should take, the tactics they should adopt and the allies they should seek. All this demands an understanding that they are together. This cannot be assumed. A method has to be devised to ascertain their opinion, yes or no.

What do the people think? What do the participants in the struggle for the betterment of conditions feel? Their efforts sow the seed of accountability. If some are to be made answerable, they should have the powers to act. Who should such people be? How can they be spotted? Centuries ago, the English established themselves as the world’s supreme nation against rival claimants. Since then the idea of popular sovereignty has become an integral part of civilised governments. Some nations like France learned from England’s example.

We in South Asia are a watchful people. We were determined to throw out the yoke of foreign rule. We also wanted to devise a system to rule ourselves. Our experience was all that the British taught us — the different acts under which carefully selected people would come to the assemblies and parliaments to rule. Very few came directly elected by the people. That was our democratic system. Our struggle in different parts of the region was to have more and more elected representatives.

We shed each other’s blood, although we were independent. The subcontinent of India was partitioned into India and Pakistan on the basis of religion. When the constitution in the newly independent countries was framed, the people’s say was naturally the most.

The biggest achievement of the constitution was to keep the rights of the people supreme and to ensure that the nations did not substitute white masters with brown sahibs.

It was not a question of government alone. It was also a question of the constitutional guarantee whereby sovereignty stayed with the people. And does democracy mean only going to polling booths and registering votes? The answer to such questions may be able to tell whether democracy will survive in South Asia.

The people’s wishes — and prayers — would have yielded some results by this time had the hostility between India and Pakistan been overcome. Neither India nor Pakistan has been able to overcome the differences which go back a long way. In a way, it is the same old bias between Hindus and Muslims. Parochialism spoils the thinking of secular India when it comes to Pakistan. On the other hand, Pakistan has never adopted secularism even after Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s declaration that the state would have nothing to do with religion.

Between August 1947 and 2010, the two countries have engaged in three wars, apart from militaristic stances over the Rann of Kutch, Siachen and Kargil. Both are also nuclear powers. Still they love to hate each other. Kashmir and water are symptoms, not the disease.

The disease is the bias, suspicion and mistrust which appear in one form or the other. Even if one issue was to be solved, another would rear its ugly head because of the fundamental Hindu-Muslim divide. How do the two nations get away from this posture? The sooner we find an answer to this question, the stronger will be Saarc.

The writer is a senior journalist based in New Delhi.The Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) summit will be over by the time these lines appear in print. But we can say that it was another attempt to scale the mountain of difficulties.

The 15th people’s Saarc meeting was held in Delhi recently to impress upon the participants of the official Saarc summit in Thimpu, Bhutan, that South Asian countries will continue to lag behind in development until they realise the meaning of cooperation.

Representatives of human rights bodies, trade unions, women groups and others from the Saarc countries — Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Pakistan, Nepal, the Maldives and Sri Lanka — demanded a union of South Asian countries in the manner of the European Union, while retaining their individual identity and sovereignty. Some even saw the prospects of one market, one visa and one currency. The representatives (60 from Pakistan alone) “reaffirmed the South Asian people’s commitment to creating a South Asia free from all discrimination, exclusion and domination”.

Indeed, these are lofty ideals that are worth pursuing. The participants were not only passionate about them, they were also committed to rising above nationalism and parochialism to make the dream of a South Asia Union come true. Their speeches had no rancour, no bitterness and no allegation.

All the eight countries are different in their own way. Yet many of them were ruled by foreigners which has cast their outlook in a civilisational mould, reflecting their commonality. Unfortunately, they a seek solution to their basic problems, not from within the region but from outside.

This dependence is the fallout of their slavery. The British who ruled practically the entire region were ruthless masters. They used people in the region as brick and mortar to build the structure of their empire. Any big or odd stone that did not fit in was crushed or thrown aside. Not many rose to challenge the system. The efforts of the few who did were nipped in the bud. Others were eliminated.

Still this region, with its people of different traditions, defeated the British. In their journey towards independence, they fell and rose but reached their destination. It is a saga of suffering and sacrifice which is recalled even today.

South Asia has learned the lesson that every enslaved country does from humiliation. But what it has not learnt yet is that people have to make a joint effort to overcome problems. Together they can fight to determine the path they should take, the tactics they should adopt and the allies they should seek. All this demands an understanding that they are together. This cannot be assumed. A method has to be devised to ascertain their opinion, yes or no.

What do the people think? What do the participants in the struggle for the betterment of conditions feel? Their efforts sow the seed of accountability. If some are to be made answerable, they should have the powers to act. Who should such people be? How can they be spotted? Centuries ago, the English established themselves as the world’s supreme nation against rival claimants. Since then the idea of popular sovereignty has become an integral part of civilised governments. Some nations like France learned from England’s example.

We in South Asia are a watchful people. We were determined to throw out the yoke of foreign rule. We also wanted to devise a system to rule ourselves. Our experience was all that the British taught us — the different acts under which carefully selected people would come to the assemblies and parliaments to rule. Very few came directly elected by the people. That was our democratic system. Our struggle in different parts of the region was to have more and more elected representatives.

We shed each other’s blood, although we were independent. The subcontinent of India was partitioned into India and Pakistan on the basis of religion. When the constitution in the newly independent countries was framed, the people’s say was naturally the most.

The biggest achievement of the constitution was to keep the rights of the people supreme and to ensure that the nations did not substitute white masters with brown sahibs.

It was not a question of government alone. It was also a question of the constitutional guarantee whereby sovereignty stayed with the people. And does democracy mean only going to polling booths and registering votes? The answer to such questions may be able to tell whether democracy will survive in South Asia.

The people’s wishes — and prayers — would have yielded some results by this time had the hostility between India and Pakistan been overcome. Neither India nor Pakistan has been able to overcome the differences which go back a long way. In a way, it is the same old bias between Hindus and Muslims. Parochialism spoils the thinking of secular India when it comes to Pakistan. On the other hand, Pakistan has never adopted secularism even after Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s declaration that the state would have nothing to do with religion.

Between August 1947 and 2010, the two countries have engaged in three wars, apart from militaristic stances over the Rann of Kutch, Siachen and Kargil. Both are also nuclear powers. Still they love to hate each other. Kashmir and water are symptoms, not the disease.

The disease is the bias, suspicion and mistrust which appear in one form or the other. Even if one issue was to be solved, another would rear its ugly head because of the fundamental Hindu-Muslim divide. How do the two nations get away from this posture? The sooner we find an answer to this question, the stronger will be Saarc.

The writer is a senior journalist based in New Delhi.

The Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) summit will be over by the time these lines appear in print. But we can say that it was another attempt to scale the mountain of difficulties.

The 15th people’s Saarc meeting was held in Delhi recently to impress upon the participants of the official Saarc summit in Thimpu, malady Bhutan, store that South Asian countries will continue to lag behind in development until they realise the meaning of cooperation.

Representatives of human rights bodies, trade unions, women groups and others from the Saarc countries — Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Pakistan, Nepal, the Maldives and Sri Lanka — demanded a union of South Asian countries in the manner of the European Union, while retaining their individual identity and sovereignty. Some even saw the prospects of one market, one visa and one currency. The representatives (60 from Pakistan alone) “reaffirmed the South Asian people’s commitment to creating a South Asia free from all discrimination, exclusion and domination”.

Indeed, these are lofty ideals that are worth pursuing. The participants were not only passionate about them, they were also committed to rising above nationalism and parochialism to make the dream of a South Asia Union come true. Their speeches had no rancour, no bitterness and no allegation.

All the eight countries are different in their own way. Yet many of them were ruled by foreigners which has cast their outlook in a civilisational mould, reflecting their commonality. Unfortunately, they a seek solution to their basic problems, not from within the region but from outside.

This dependence is the fallout of their slavery. The British who ruled practically the entire region were ruthless masters. They used people in the region as brick and mortar to build the structure of their empire. Any big or odd stone that did not fit in was crushed or thrown aside. Not many rose to challenge the system. The efforts of the few who did were nipped in the bud. Others were eliminated.

Still this region, with its people of different traditions, defeated the British. In their journey towards independence, they fell and rose but reached their destination. It is a saga of suffering and sacrifice which is recalled even today.

South Asia has learned the lesson that every enslaved country does from humiliation. But what it has not learnt yet is that people have to make a joint effort to overcome problems. Together they can fight to determine the path they should take, the tactics they should adopt and the allies they should seek. All this demands an understanding that they are together. This cannot be assumed. A method has to be devised to ascertain their opinion, yes or no.

What do the people think? What do the participants in the struggle for the betterment of conditions feel? Their efforts sow the seed of accountability. If some are to be made answerable, they should have the powers to act. Who should such people be? How can they be spotted? Centuries ago, the English established themselves as the world’s supreme nation against rival claimants. Since then the idea of popular sovereignty has become an integral part of civilised governments. Some nations like France learned from England’s example.

We in South Asia are a watchful people. We were determined to throw out the yoke of foreign rule. We also wanted to devise a system to rule ourselves. Our experience was all that the British taught us — the different acts under which carefully selected people would come to the assemblies and parliaments to rule. Very few came directly elected by the people. That was our democratic system. Our struggle in different parts of the region was to have more and more elected representatives.

We shed each other’s blood, although we were independent. The subcontinent of India was partitioned into India and Pakistan on the basis of religion. When the constitution in the newly independent countries was framed, the people’s say was naturally the most.

The biggest achievement of the constitution was to keep the rights of the people supreme and to ensure that the nations did not substitute white masters with brown sahibs.

It was not a question of government alone. It was also a question of the constitutional guarantee whereby sovereignty stayed with the people. And does democracy mean only going to polling booths and registering votes? The answer to such questions may be able to tell whether democracy will survive in South Asia.

The people’s wishes — and prayers — would have yielded some results by this time had the hostility between India and Pakistan been overcome. Neither India nor Pakistan has been able to overcome the differences which go back a long way. In a way, it is the same old bias between Hindus and Muslims. Parochialism spoils the thinking of secular India when it comes to Pakistan. On the other hand, Pakistan has never adopted secularism even after Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s declaration that the state would have nothing to do with religion.

Between August 1947 and 2010, the two countries have engaged in three wars, apart from militaristic stances over the Rann of Kutch, Siachen and Kargil. Both are also nuclear powers. Still they love to hate each other. Kashmir and water are symptoms, not the disease.

The disease is the bias, suspicion and mistrust which appear in one form or the other. Even if one issue was to be solved, another would rear its ugly head because of the fundamental Hindu-Muslim divide. How do the two nations get away from this posture? The sooner we find an answer to this question, the stronger will be Saarc.

The writer is a senior journalist based in New Delhi.The Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) summit will be over by the time these lines appear in print. But we can say that it was another attempt to scale the mountain of difficulties.

The 15th people’s Saarc meeting was held in Delhi recently to impress upon the participants of the official Saarc summit in Thimpu, Bhutan, that South Asian countries will continue to lag behind in development until they realise the meaning of cooperation.

Representatives of human rights bodies, trade unions, women groups and others from the Saarc countries — Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Pakistan, Nepal, the Maldives and Sri Lanka — demanded a union of South Asian countries in the manner of the European Union, while retaining their individual identity and sovereignty. Some even saw the prospects of one market, one visa and one currency. The representatives (60 from Pakistan alone) “reaffirmed the South Asian people’s commitment to creating a South Asia free from all discrimination, exclusion and domination”.

Indeed, these are lofty ideals that are worth pursuing. The participants were not only passionate about them, they were also committed to rising above nationalism and parochialism to make the dream of a South Asia Union come true. Their speeches had no rancour, no bitterness and no allegation.

All the eight countries are different in their own way. Yet many of them were ruled by foreigners which has cast their outlook in a civilisational mould, reflecting their commonality. Unfortunately, they a seek solution to their basic problems, not from within the region but from outside.

This dependence is the fallout of their slavery. The British who ruled practically the entire region were ruthless masters. They used people in the region as brick and mortar to build the structure of their empire. Any big or odd stone that did not fit in was crushed or thrown aside. Not many rose to challenge the system. The efforts of the few who did were nipped in the bud. Others were eliminated.

Still this region, with its people of different traditions, defeated the British. In their journey towards independence, they fell and rose but reached their destination. It is a saga of suffering and sacrifice which is recalled even today.

South Asia has learned the lesson that every enslaved country does from humiliation. But what it has not learnt yet is that people have to make a joint effort to overcome problems. Together they can fight to determine the path they should take, the tactics they should adopt and the allies they should seek. All this demands an understanding that they are together. This cannot be assumed. A method has to be devised to ascertain their opinion, yes or no.

What do the people think? What do the participants in the struggle for the betterment of conditions feel? Their efforts sow the seed of accountability. If some are to be made answerable, they should have the powers to act. Who should such people be? How can they be spotted? Centuries ago, the English established themselves as the world’s supreme nation against rival claimants. Since then the idea of popular sovereignty has become an integral part of civilised governments. Some nations like France learned from England’s example.

We in South Asia are a watchful people. We were determined to throw out the yoke of foreign rule. We also wanted to devise a system to rule ourselves. Our experience was all that the British taught us — the different acts under which carefully selected people would come to the assemblies and parliaments to rule. Very few came directly elected by the people. That was our democratic system. Our struggle in different parts of the region was to have more and more elected representatives.

We shed each other’s blood, although we were independent. The subcontinent of India was partitioned into India and Pakistan on the basis of religion. When the constitution in the newly independent countries was framed, the people’s say was naturally the most.

The biggest achievement of the constitution was to keep the rights of the people supreme and to ensure that the nations did not substitute white masters with brown sahibs.

It was not a question of government alone. It was also a question of the constitutional guarantee whereby sovereignty stayed with the people. And does democracy mean only going to polling booths and registering votes? The answer to such questions may be able to tell whether democracy will survive in South Asia.

The people’s wishes — and prayers — would have yielded some results by this time had the hostility between India and Pakistan been overcome. Neither India nor Pakistan has been able to overcome the differences which go back a long way. In a way, it is the same old bias between Hindus and Muslims. Parochialism spoils the thinking of secular India when it comes to Pakistan. On the other hand, Pakistan has never adopted secularism even after Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s declaration that the state would have nothing to do with religion.

Between August 1947 and 2010, the two countries have engaged in three wars, apart from militaristic stances over the Rann of Kutch, Siachen and Kargil. Both are also nuclear powers. Still they love to hate each other. Kashmir and water are symptoms, not the disease.

The disease is the bias, suspicion and mistrust which appear in one form or the other. Even if one issue was to be solved, another would rear its ugly head because of the fundamental Hindu-Muslim divide. How do the two nations get away from this posture? The sooner we find an answer to this question, the stronger will be Saarc.

The writer is a senior journalist based in New Delhi.

After having been saved by the States, order here come the banks and financial markets attacking these same States. They have not got over their unbalanced behaviour before the crisis that had led to it. The States have saved the banks without giving themselves the means of controlling them, help they have restored the power of the financial markets by abandoning the idea of regulating them without developing socially and ecologically useful forms of production, research and services and without reviving employment and social justice or increasing public receipts.

For the population this means a double punishment. After years of deterioration because of neo-liberal policies, their living conditions are suffering from the direct effects of the financial crisis (unemployment, recession) and are now being hit by the social regression that their governments intend to inflict on them. Those who are most vulnerable — particularly the women, young people, migrants and the insecure — already hard hit will be plunged into even more tragic situations.

The governments must break with the principle “The State assumes the debts, the people tighten their belts and the profits go to the financial sector”. It must be possible to find solutions with other principles and logics.

The attitude of the principal political leaders renewing the legitimacy of the Stability Pact (which, nevertheless, they all generally trampled underfoot at the height of the crisis, it was so unworkable) and of the Lisbon strategy is totally irresponsible and endangers the very existence of the euro and the E.U. The E.U. demands that Greece bring its public debt back into balance by brute force altough an austerity programme would only increase the danger of a recession and further reduce its fiscal revenue. Thus it wants to make an example of this country, which is being attacked by the markets, after having handed over to the IMF several of the European States most hard hit by the crisis, without the slightest measure of solidarity. This clearly doesn’t exist within the Union. The agreement concluded March 26th reveals again through the call to the IMF the incapacity of the European Union to set up real measures of solidarity within the Eurozone.

Making people think that the problems are “national” is a way of hiding the extent to which the E.U. is, today, a creator of crisis and is contributing towards the development of inequalities in its very heart, in particular by setting the States up in fiscal and social competition with one another. There is a great danger that we will see this brutal policy leading to divisions and the hunt for scapegoats within the various Societies of Europe. A “nationalisation” of problems can only give more weight to nationalist trends, to Right wing, populist and extremist forces already present in Europe and to splits between North and South, East and West of the continent. More generally, one is forced to note that the aggressive principles of financialised capitalism are building up threats to democracy and peace.

As signatories of this appeal, we consider that:

1. It is not up to the populations to pay for the crisis of the financial markets. The States and their populations must be set free from the stranglehold of finance. The E.U. has means of limiting its weight in its region. We must put an end to the independence of the European Central Bank, its restrictive policies, the ban on its lending to member States. The States must be able to borrow under acceptable conditions.

2. The banks and finance must be resized, subjected to strict controls and significant taxation of financial movements and of exess pofits. It is necessary to tax at once the incomes of the financial agents and of major shareholders; create public banking centres that cooperate at a European level; redirect credit towards socially useful and ecologically sustainable activities; suspend the EU directive “on shareholders rights” and accompany this with the strengthening of public authorities.

3. The neo-liberal dogmas conveyed by the European Union and the States must be dismissed once and for all. The European budget must enable more significant means to be pooled for mutual benefit, so as to favour cohesion and the reduction of inequalities between regions. There must be a break with the Lisbon strategy that is a source of job insecurity, of the privatisation of public services, health and retirement pensions, of the treatment of knowledge, research, training as mere commodities.

4, The single currency must not become a tool for competition; it must be accompanied by a “Pact of cooperation and solidarity” as well as by common objectives regarding industrial and research policies, cooperation between public services, all of which presupposes the “upward harmonisation of wages and social security, which in turn presupposes fiscal convergences, compatible budgetary choices. Fiscal, social and ecological dumping must be banned.

5. The E.U. and its member states must act in a united manner at continental and planet-wide levels in favour of a new kind of ecologically sustainable development. This presupposes a change of direction in all international institutions and when concluding trade agreements.

It is time that the governments of the European Union stop the plundering of their population by the banks! They must stop behaving like objective allies of finance!

I sign this Appeal:

Surname, first name:

I wish my name to be published in the list or signatories, accompanied by the following description (profession, level of responsibility, organisation…).

Country:

Town and postcode:

Address:

Email:

Telephone:

Remarks:

Please return this Appeal to:

  • Elisabeth Gauthier (Transform! European network) elgauthi@internatif.org
  • Frédéric Viale (Group Europe – Attac France) frederic.viale@free.fr

European Food declaration

Covernote of the “European Food declaration”
We are a broad range of organisations -see list in “who are we”- – who are concerned with the future of food and agriculture in Europe. As in other regions in the world, ampoule the number of people and organizations that are working towards a fairer, more inclusive and sustainable food system is growing. Many of them are actively engaged in building a viable alternative to the current food production, distribution and consumption – from the bottom up. This new system of food and agriculture is firmly grounded on equity, the universal right to food, good governance and transparency.
A wide range of renewed activities such as increasing local food production, local markets, local procurement, seed swaps and so on has been emerging and growing across Europe. In addition new movements, such as the Transition Town movement, GM-free regions and national and local debates on food policy show increasing public support for another form of food and agriculture.
Yet, grassroots activities and local movements are not enough. We believe it is time to build a broad coalition of groups at the European level to challenge the current Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) and the European Commission’s and our governments’ avowed plans for a renewed CAP in 2013. Their vision is, to keep the global ‘competitiveness’ of Europe’s food industry as the chief objective of Europe’s CAP. The political process for the new CAP 2013 is starting now. We believe a strong message is needed, not only for EU policy makers, but for policy makers in our countries – a vision for a CAP suitable for the 21st century.
We have created a “European Food Declaration: towards a healthy, sustainable, fair and mutually supportive Common Agriculture and Food Policy”. It outlines what we think the policy objectives of a CAP for the next decades should be. We invite as many organizations, groups and individuals as possible to sign this declaration and to use it as a tool to promote the discussion about what kind of food and agriculture policy we need. We also ask you to share this declaration with other grassroots, civil society, environment and food organisations that are actively engaged in building a better food system.
Our aim is to collect as many signatures within our different networks before the end of February 2010. Early February, we will invite the public to sign the declaration.
This declaration is the first step in our efforts to build a broad movement for change towards food sovereignty policies and practices in Europe, including the EU. We are also planning a Europe-wide forum in 2011 for people and organisations who are concerned about these issues and who would like to join forces in order to reach our common objectives together. If you are interested to be involved in the preparation of that forum or could help us to organise that forum please contact us.
European Food declaration
We, the undersigned, believe that the European Union needs to meet the urgent challenges Europe is facing regarding food and agriculture.
After more than a half-century of industrialisation of agriculture and food production, sustainable family farming and local food cultures have been substantially reduced in Europe. Today, our food system is dependent on under-priced fossil fuels, does not recognize the limitations of water and land resources, and supports unhealthy diets high in calories, fat and salt, and low in fruit, vegetables and grains. Looking ahead, rising energy costs, drastic losses in biodiversity, climate change and declining water and land resources threaten the future of food production. At the same time, a growing world population faces the potential dual burden of widespread hunger and chronic diseases due to overconsumption.
We will only be able to address these challenges successfully with a completely different approach to food and agriculture policies and practices. The European Union must recognize and support the crucial role of sustainable family farming in the food supply of the population. All people should have access to healthy, safe, and nutritious food. The ways in which we grow, distribute, prepare and eat food should celebrate Europe’s cultural diversity, providing sustenance equitably and sustainably.
The present Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) is currently being debated and is due for change in 2013. After decades of the domination by transnational corporations and the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in determining food and agriculture policy, it is time for people in Europe to re-appropriate agriculture and food policy: it is time for food sovereignty. We believe a new Common Food and Agriculture Policy should guarantee and protect citizens’ space in the EU and candidate countries and their ability and right to define their own models of production, distribution and consumption following the principles outlined below.
The new Common Food and Agriculture Policy:
1. considers food as a universal human right, not merely a commodity.
2. gives priority to growing food and feed for Europe and changes international trade in agricultural products according to principles of equity, social justice and ecological sustainability. The CAP should not harm other countries’ food and agriculture systems.
3. promotes healthy eating patterns, moving towards plant-based diets and towards a reduced consumption of meat, energy-dense and highly processed foods, and saturated fats, while respecting the regional cultural dietary habits and traditions.
4. gives priority to maintaining an agriculture all over Europe that involves numerous farmers producing food and caring for the countryside. That is not achievable without fair and secure farm prices, which should allow a fair income for farmers and agricultural workers, and fair prices for consumers.
5. ensures fair, non-discriminatory conditions for farmers and agricultural workers in Central and Eastern Europe, and promotes a fair and equitable access to land.
6. respects the local and global environment, protects the finite resources of soil and water, increases biodiversity and respects animal welfare.
7. guarantees that agriculture and food production remain free from GMOs and fosters farmers’ seeds and the diversity of domestic livestock species, building on local knowledge.
8. stops promoting the use and the production of industrial agrofuels and gives priority to the reduction of transport in general.
9. ensures transparency along the food chain so that citizens know how their food is produced, where it comes from, what it contains and what is included in the price paid by consumers.
10. reduces the concentration of power in the agricultural, food processing and retail sectors and their influence on what is produced and consumed, and promotes food systems that shorten the distance between farmers and consumers.
11. encourages the production and consumption of local, seasonal, high quality products reconnecting citizens with their food and food producers.
12. devotes resources to teaching children the skills and knowledge required to produce, prepare, and enjoy healthy, nutritious food.
View list of signatures and sign the Declaration
For more information on the European Food Declaration, visit: http://www.europeanfooddeclaration.org

Spring Alliance Manifesto

Watch online the video recording from the International Conference of Governments and Social Movements “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” held 21-22 July 2009 in Paraguay.

The Conference was organised as a series of round tables for dialogue bringing together parliamentarians, governments and civil society representatives from Latin America, Africa, Asia and Europe.

The objective of this International Conference was to advance the debate among governments, regional/international bodies, policy makers, parliamentarians and social movements from the four regions about the possibilities to respond to these crises through regional alternatives and a model of regional integration that promotes a change in the development model of the regions.


CONFERENCE INTRODUCTION
– Gonzalo Berron, ASC/CSA (Brasil)
– Brid Brennan, TNI/Peoples’ Agenda for Alternative Regionalisms, (Netherlands)
– Gustavo Codas, Presidencia Gobierno (Paraguay)

PANEL 1: SYSTEMIC CRISIS, IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS ON REGIONAL INTEGRATION PROCESSES

PANEL 2: REGIONAL RESPONSES TO THE CRISES

PANEL 3: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: RE-THINKING THE DEVELOPMENT MODEL. Complementarity versus competition. Integration and Asymmetries

PANEL 4: DEVELOPMENT MODEL AND INFRASTRUCTURE

PANEL 5: ENERGY CRISIS AND CLIMATE CHANGE: THE CHALLENGE TO FIND REGIONAL SOLUTIONS

PANEL 6: PRODUCTION MODEL AND FOOD SOVEREIGNTY

PANEL 7: FINANCES AND DEVELOPMENT MODEL: NEW REGIONAL FINANCIAL STRUCTURES

PANEL 8: REGIONAL PEACE, DEMOCRACY AND HUMAN RIGHTS

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

PANEL 4: DEVELOPMENT MODEL AND INFRASTRUCTURE
– Michelle Pressend, Trade Strategy Group, South Africa
– Guilherme Carvalho, Rede Brasil sobre Instituições Financeiras Multilaterais, Brazil
– Ricardo Miranda, Confederación Sindical Única de Trabajadores Campesinos de Bolivia (CSUTCB), Bolivia

Presentation by Michelle Pressend, Trade Strategy Group, South Africa

Presentation by Guilherme Carvalho, Rede Brasil sobre Instituições Financeiras Multilaterais, Brazil

Presentation by Ricardo Miranda, Confederación Sindical Única de Trabajadores Campesinos de Bolivia (CSUTCB), Bolivia

QUESTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam (Finland)

Beverly Keen, Jubileo Sur (Argentina)

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

PANEL 6: PRODUCTION MODEL AND FOOD SOVEREIGNTY
– Juan José Domínguez, Parlamentario, treat MPP – FA Uruguay
– Rabindra Adhikari, Member of Parliament, Nepal
– Indra Lubis, La Via Campesina, Indonesia
– Lodwick Chizarura, SEATINI, Zimbabwe
– Francisca Rodríguez, ANAMURI/CLOC, Chile

Presentation by Juan José Domínguez, Parlamentario, MPP – FA Uruguay

Presentation by Rabindra Adhikari, Member of Parliament, Nepal

Presentation by Indra Lubis, La Via Campesina, Indonesia

Presentation by Lodwick Chizarura, SEATINI, Zimbabwe

Presentation by Francisca Rodríguez, ANAMURI/CLOC, Chile

DEBATE FORUM: QUESTIONS AND REFLECTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Tom Kucharz, Ecologistas en Acción, España

Maureen Santos, REBRIP, Brasil

Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands

Martín Drago, REDES-Amigos de la Tierra, Uruguay

RESPONSES FROM THE PANEL
Juan José Domínguez, Parlamentario, MPP – FA Uruguay

Indra Lubis, La Via Campesina, Indonesia

Rabindra Adhikari, Member of Parliament, Nepal

Lodwick Chizarura, SEATINI, Zimbabwe

Francisca Rodríguez, ANAMURI/CLOC, Chile

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

PANEL 8: REGIONAL PEACE, DEMOCRACY AND HUMAN RIGHTS
– Lee, pharm Seung-Heon, diagnosis Chief External Relations Department of the Korea Democratic Labor Party, South Korea
– Ramon Corvalan, SERPAJ Paraguay/ Iniciativa Paraguaya por la integracion de los Pueblos
– Meena Menon, Focus on the Global South, India
– Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam, Finland
– Pezo Mateo-Phiri, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, Zambia

Presentation by Lee, Seung-Heon, Chief External Relations Department of the Korea Democratic Labor Party, South Korea

Presentation by Ramon Corvalan, SERPAJ Paraguay/ Iniciativa Paraguaya por la integracion de los Pueblos

Presentation by Meena Menon, Focus on the Global South, India

Presentation by Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam, Finland

Presentation by Pezo Mateo-Phiri, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, Zambia

DEBATE FORUM: QUESTIONS AND REFLECTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Paulo Bustillos, Fundacion Solon, Bolivia

RESPONSES FROM THE PANEL
Ramon Corvalan, SERPAJ Paraguay/ Iniciativa Paraguaya por la integracion de los Pueblos

Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam, Finland

Miguel Monserrat, Presidente de la Asamblea Permanente por los Derechos Humanos, Argentina

Meena Menon, Focus on the Global South, India

Pezo Mateo-Phiri, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, Zambia

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, treat Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, help México
– Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, sick Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México
– Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, health Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, physician México
– Brid Brennan, sales Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

PANEL 8: REGIONAL PEACE, click DEMOCRACY AND HUMAN RIGHTS
– Lee, Seung-Heon, Chief External Relations Department of the Korea Democratic Labor Party, South Korea
– Ramon Corvalan, SERPAJ Paraguay/ Iniciativa Paraguaya por la integracion de los Pueblos
– Meena Menon, Focus on the Global South, India
– Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam, Finland
– Pezo Mateo-Phiri, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, Zambia

Presentation by Lee, Seung-Heon, Chief External Relations Department of the Korea Democratic Labor Party, South Korea

Presentation by Ramon Corvalan, SERPAJ Paraguay/ Iniciativa Paraguaya por la integracion de los Pueblos

Presentation by Meena Menon, Focus on the Global South, India

Presentation by Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam, Finland

Presentation by Pezo Mateo-Phiri, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, Zambia

DEBATE FORUM: QUESTIONS AND REFLECTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Paulo Bustillos, Fundacion Solon, Bolivia

RESPONSES FROM THE PANEL
Ramon Corvalan, SERPAJ Paraguay/ Iniciativa Paraguaya por la integracion de los Pueblos

Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam, Finland

Miguel Monserrat, Presidente de la Asamblea Permanente por los Derechos Humanos, Argentina

Meena Menon, Focus on the Global South, India

Pezo Mateo-Phiri, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, Zambia

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

PANEL 8: REGIONAL PEACE,
DEMOCRACY AND HUMAN RIGHTS

– Lee, online Seung-Heon, Chief External Relations Department of the Korea Democratic Labor Party, South Korea
– Ramon Corvalan, SERPAJ Paraguay/ Iniciativa Paraguaya por la integracion de los Pueblos
– Meena Menon, Focus on the Global South, India
– Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam, Finland
– Pezo Mateo-Phiri, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, Zambia

Presentation by Lee, Seung-Heon, Chief External Relations Department of the Korea Democratic Labor Party, South Korea

Presentation by Ramon Corvalan, SERPAJ Paraguay/ Iniciativa Paraguaya por la integracion de los Pueblos

Presentation by Meena Menon, Focus on the Global South, India

Presentation by Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam, Finland

Presentation by Pezo Mateo-Phiri, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, Zambia

DEBATE FORUM: QUESTIONS AND REFLECTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Paulo Bustillos, Fundacion Solon, Bolivia

RESPONSES FROM THE PANEL
Ramon Corvalan, SERPAJ Paraguay/ Iniciativa Paraguaya por la integracion de los Pueblos

Thomas Wallgren, Coalition for comprehensive democracy – Vasudhaiva Kutumkakam, Finland

Miguel Monserrat, Presidente de la Asamblea Permanente por los Derechos Humanos, Argentina

Meena Menon, Focus on the Global South, India

Pezo Mateo-Phiri, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, Zambia

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

PANEL 7: FINANCES AND DEVELOPMENT MODEL: NEW REGIONAL FINANCIAL STRUCTURES
– Introduction: Veronique Sandoval, Espace Marx, sales France
– Pedro Páez, ailment Presidente Comisión Técnica Presidencial Ecuatoriana para la Nueva Arquitectura Financiera Regional y el Banco del Sur, Ecuador
– Ivan Lukas, Glopolis, Czech Republic
– Beverly Keene, Jubileo Sur, Argentina

Presentation by Veronique Sandoval, Espace Marx, France

Presentation by Pedro Páez, Presidente Comisión Técnica Presidencial Ecuatoriana para la Nueva Arquitectura Financiera Regional y el Banco del Sur, Ecuador

Presentation by Ivan Lukas, Glopolis, Czech Republic

Presentation by Beverly Keene, Jubileo Sur, Argentina

DEBATE FORUM: QUESTIONS AND REFLECTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Luciana Ghiotto, ATTAC, Argentina and Graciela Rodriguez, IGTN/REBRIP, Brasil

RESPONSES FROM THE PANEL
Pedro Páez, Presidente Comisión Técnica Presidencial Ecuatoriana para la Nueva Arquitectura Financiera Regional y el Banco del Sur, Ecuador

Beverly Keene, Jubileo Sur, Argentina

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

PANEL 6: PRODUCTION MODEL AND FOOD SOVEREIGNTY
– Juan José Domínguez, find Parlamentario, treatment MPP – FA Uruguay
– Rabindra Adhikari, Member of Parliament, Nepal
– Indra Lubis, La Via Campesina, Indonesia
– Lodwick Chizarura, SEATINI, Zimbabwe
– Francisca Rodríguez, ANAMURI/CLOC, Chile

Presentation by Juan José Domínguez, Parlamentario, MPP – FA Uruguay

Presentation by Rabindra Adhikari, Member of Parliament, Nepal

Presentation by Lodwick Chizarura, SEATINI, Zimbabwe

Presentation by Francisca Rodríguez, ANAMURI/CLOC, Chile

DEBATE FORUM: QUESTIONS AND REFLECTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Tom Kucharz, Ecologistas en Acción, España

Maureen Santos, REBRIP, Brasil

Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands

Martín Drago, REDES-Amigos de la Tierra, Uruguay

RESPONSES FROM THE PANEL
Juan José Domínguez, Parlamentario, MPP – FA Uruguay

Indra Lubis, La Via Campesina, Indonesia

Rabindra Adhikari, Member of Parliament, Nepal

Lodwick Chizarura, SEATINI, Zimbabwe

Francisca Rodríguez, ANAMURI/CLOC, Chile

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

PANEL 6: PRODUCTION MODEL AND FOOD SOVEREIGNTY
– Juan José Domínguez, cheap Parlamentario, MPP – FA Uruguay
– Rabindra Adhikari, sales Member of Parliament, Nepal
– Indra Lubis, La Via Campesina, Indonesia
– Lodwick Chizarura, SEATINI, Zimbabwe
– Francisca Rodríguez, ANAMURI/CLOC, Chile

Presentation by Juan José Domínguez, Parlamentario, MPP – FA Uruguay

Presentation by Rabindra Adhikari, Member of Parliament, Nepal

Presentation by Indra Lubis, La Via Campesina, Indonesia

Presentation by Lodwick Chizarura, SEATINI, Zimbabwe

Presentation by Francisca Rodríguez, ANAMURI/CLOC, Chile

DEBATE FORUM: QUESTIONS AND REFLECTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Tom Kucharz, Ecologistas en Acción, España

Maureen Santos, REBRIP, Brasil

Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands

Martín Drago, REDES-Amigos de la Tierra, Uruguay

RESPONSES FROM THE PANEL
Juan José Domínguez, Parlamentario, MPP – FA Uruguay

Indra Lubis, La Via Campesina, Indonesia

Rabindra Adhikari, Member of Parliament, Nepal

Lodwick Chizarura, SEATINI, Zimbabwe

Francisca Rodríguez, ANAMURI/CLOC, Chile

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

PANEL 5: ENERGY CRISIS AND CLIMATE CHANGE: THE CHALLENGE TO FIND REGIONAL SOLUTIONS
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament, Philippines
– Pablo Bertinat, Cono Sur Sustentable, Argentina
– Roberto Colman, Coordinadora Soberanía Energética, Paraguay
– Tom Kucharz, Ecologistas en Acción, España

Presentation by Walden Bello, Member of Parliament, Philippines

Presentation by Pablo Bertinat, Cono Sur Sustentable, Argentina

Presentation by Roberto Colman, Coordinadora Soberanía Energética, Paraguay

Presentation by Tom Kucharz, Ecologistas en Acción, España

DEBATE FORUM: QUESTIONS AND REFLEXIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Michelle Pressend, Trade Strategy Group, South Africa

Frederic Viale, ATTAC France

Dot Keet, SAPSN, South Africa

Ligia Prieto, Ex Parlamentaria, Paraguay

Pedro Páez, Presidente Comisión Técnica Presidencial Ecuatoriana para la Nueva Arquitectura Financiera Regional y el Banco del Sur, Ecuador

Elizabeth Gautier, Espace Marx, France

RESPONSES FROM THE PANEL
Tom Kucharz, Ecologistas en Acción, España

Walden Bello, Member of Parliament, Philippines

Pablo Bertinat, Cono Sur Sustentable, Argentina

Roberto Colman, Coordinadora Soberanía Energética, Paraguay

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, sale Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, help México
– Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México
– Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

Gustavo Codas, Asesor Presidencia del Gobierno de Paraguay

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, cheap Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, see México
– Brid Brennan, see Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

Gustavo Codas, Asesor Presidencia del Gobierno de Paraguay

QUESTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva,
Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México
– Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

Gustavo Codas, Asesor Presidencia del Gobierno de Paraguay

QUESTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Graciela Rodriguez, IGTN/REBRIP, Brasil

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, capsule México
– Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

Gustavo Codas, Asesor Presidencia del Gobierno de Paraguay

QUESTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Graciela Rodriguez, IGTN/REBRIP, Brasil

Beverly Keene, Jubileo Sur, Argentina

Tom Kucharz, Ecologistas en Acción, España

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, seek México
– Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

Gustavo Codas, Asesor Presidencia del Gobierno de Paraguay

QUESTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Graciela Rodriguez, IGTN/REBRIP, Brasil

Beverly Keene, Jubileo Sur, Argentina

Tom Kucharz, Ecologistas en Acción, España

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

Gustavo Codas, Asesor Presidencia del Gobierno de Paraguay

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, ampoule Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, unhealthy México
– Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

Gustavo Codas, Asesor Presidencia del Gobierno de Paraguay

QUESTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Graciela Rodriguez, IGTN/REBRIP, Brasil

Beverly Keene, Jubileo Sur, Argentina

Tom Kucharz, Ecologistas en Acción, España

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE of GOVERNMENTS and SOCIAL MOVEMENTS “Regional Integration: an opportunity to face the crises” (21 and 22 July 2009)

CLOSING PANEL: REGIONAL INTEGRATION: CHALLENGES FOR THE MOVEMENTS AND THE GOVERNMENTS
– Héctor de la Cueva, check sales Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, online discount México
– Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
– Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
– Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
– Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
– Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
– Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

Introduction by Héctor de la Cueva, Red Mexicana de Acción frente al Libre Comercio, México

Presentation by Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute, Netherlands
Edgardo Lander, Universidad Central de Venezuela/Consejo Hemisférico del Foro Social Mundial, Venezuela
Nalu Faria, Marcha Mundial de las Mujeres, Brasil
Walden Bello, Member of Parliament/President Freedom from Debt Coalition, Philippines
Dot Keet, Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network, South Africa
Héctor de la Cueva, RMALC, México

RESPONSES FROM GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVES
Chacho Alvarez, Presidente de la Comisión de Representantes Permanentes del MERCOSUR, Argentina

Ana Cristina Betancourt García, Coordinadora Nacional del Proyecto de Desarrollo Regional, Ministerio de Autonomía, Bolivia

Embajador Franklin Gonzalez, Representante Permanente ante el Mercosur de la Republica Bolivariana de Venezuela

CONCLUDING WORDS
Gonzalo Berrón, Confederación Sindical de las Americas/Alianza Social Continental, Brasil

Dirigido a la Cumbre de la Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América –ALBA-

Cochabamba, 16 y 17 de octubre 2009

La ALBA es coincidente en su propuesta con principios y reivindicaciones históricas planteadas por el movimiento de mujeres. Sus principios de solidaridad, and treatment cooperación, reciprocidad, complementariedad, diversidad e igualdad, han sido la base de las prácticas y contribuciones económicas de las mujeres, ligadas prioritariamente a la reproducción integral de procesos y condiciones de vida, y son también el eje de nuestras visiones sobre un nuevo sistema económico. Así, la ALBA confluye con la aspiración de las mujeres latinoamericanas y caribeñas de levantar una sociedad integrada desde una perspectiva incluyente, que recoja y potencie la policroma diversidad de sus pueblos, superando injusticias y desigualdades.

Nosotras, que participamos activamente en las luchas y resistencias contra los proyectos de integración pautados por el capital, reconocemos a la ALBA como expresión de la búsqueda de un proyecto propio, en el cual los movimientos sociales y los pueblos, con nuestra participación activa, podamos contribuir y consensuar un proceso de construcción de sociedades alternativas.

Apreciamos el potencial de la ALBA para plantear un proyecto latinoamericano basado en transformaciones mayores: el socialismo del siglo XXI –que, como lo han asumido ya algunos presidentes, ‘solo podrá ser feminista’-; el paradigma del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la riqueza de la plurinacionalidad, que redefinen ya los estados de algunos de sus países miembros.

Valoramos el hecho de que, en su corta vida, la ALBA registra ya logros en el terreno del intercambio solidario, en los dominios de educación, salud,  cooperación energética; es notable su proyección como espacio de concertación política y resolución de conflictos, de construcción de posiciones comunes, “en defensa de la independencia, la soberanía, la autodeterminación y la identidad de los países que la integran y de los intereses y las aspiraciones de los pueblos del Sur frente a los intentos de dominación política y económica”.

Como parte de los movimientos sociales y como protagonistas históricas de experiencias no mercantilizadas, hemos planteado, al igual que la ALBA, que nuestras sociedades se construyan sobre la base de la “unión de los pueblos, la autodeterminación, la complementariedad económica, el comercio justo, la lucha contra la pobreza, la preservación de la identidad cultural, la integración energética, la defensa del ambiente y la justicia”; desde esta coincidencia de perspectivas nos proponemos mancomunar esfuerzos para lograr los objetivos comunes de construcción de una Latinoamérica autodeterminada, solidaria, libre de relaciones patriarcales y levantada bajo los designios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien.

La consolidación de la ALBA como un espacio de soberanía política, económica, social, institucional, cultural, de la diversidad, de lo popular y de lo público demanda cambios de fondo en la manera de pensar, diseñar, decidir y materializar las políticas. Se trata de construir un nuevo paradigma societal, que va más allá de rediseñar el existente. Este es un reto que requiere aunar toda la inteligencia, comprensión y capacidad de diálogo entre los gobiernos de los países de la ALBA y los movimientos sociales, de manera fluida y permanente.

La creación del Consejo Ministerial de Mujeres y del Consejo de Movimientos Sociales, es paso importante para la articulación efectiva entre los gobiernos y los pueblos.  Saludamos esta decisión, a la vez que ofrecemos nuestro concurso para contribuir con el desarrollo de una perspectiva feminista en el conjunto de iniciativas y de políticas de la ALBA, como también para visualizar las medidas específicas que deberían tomarse para propiciar la igualdad de las mujeres y para erradicar el patriarcado.

Consideramos que los cambios que plantea la ALBA son alcanzables en tanto se amplíen y profundicen cambios como los que ya han emprendido algunos de nuestros países con un sentido de transformación estructural, que incluyen el reconocimiento de la diversidad económica y productiva y en ese marco la visibilización de las mujeres como actoras económicas, la equiparación entre el trabajo productivo y el reproductivo, el desarrollo de éticas de igualdad, diversidades y no violencia, el reconocimiento de la soberanía alimentaria, entre otros aspectos que podrían convertirse en punto común para todas las políticas públicas de la ALBA, colocando como eje el Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la sostenibilidad de la vida.

Con especial interés seguimos la propuesta de construir una Zona Económica de Desarrollo Compartido entre los países de la ALBA; consideramos que a su amparo y bajo un enfoque de economía diversa, social y solidaria, se pueden desarrollar iniciativas compartidas de soberanía alimentaria, de reconocimiento y desarrollo de los conocimientos de las mujeres,  de rescate y curaduría de las semillas nativas y de transgenosis natural, de producción y distribución cooperativa y asociativa, de generación de infraestructura y tecnologías orientadas al cuidado humano y ambiental.

La creación de núcleos de desarrollo endógeno binacionales o trinacionales, que transformen las condiciones de trabajo y empleo para las mujeres del campo y la ciudad, sería una importante experiencia de integración y preservación regional de la cultura productiva y solidaria acumulada históricamente por nuestros pueblos.
De igual manera, la creación de un Instituto de Estudios Feministas de los países de la ALBA, que organice intercambios de conocimientos y saberes entre los países, desarrolle proyectos de investigación sobre políticas públicas e internacionales, recupere los múltiples aportes de las mujeres a lo largo de nuestra historia, y juegue un papel activo en la generación de propuestas y desarrollo de asesorías a los gobiernos en esta materia, contribuirá significativamente al fortalecimiento de nuestro proceso de cambio regional.

La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para el impulso de un proyecto de integración alternativo que no debe repetir el déficit democrático de las propuestas precedentes. La participación en la concepción, diseño y ejecución de proyectos debe ser una divisa, por ello proponemos, como forma inicial de materialización de esa participación, que en la  instancia técnica del Consejo Social encargada de elaborar estudios, preparar propuestas y formular proyectos relacionados con las políticas sociales de la ALBA, así como de coordinar y darles seguimiento, se contemple la participación paritaria de las mujeres, la misma que deberá hacerse extensiva a todas las instancias, incluidas aquellas de decisión, gestión y representación.

La ALBA tiene la particularidad de reunir a países de la Región Andina, Centroamérica y el Caribe, con problemáticas comunes y diferentes en materia de salud y vulnerabilidad frente a los fenómenos climáticos. Sería pertinente la creación de redes de intercambio y ayuda de las organizaciones de mujeres ante situaciones de emergencia epidemiológica y catástrofes naturales.

Si bien el surgimiento y desarrollo de la ALBA ha sido un factor reconfortante en la senda de nuestras luchas, persisten en el mundo y en la región tendencias y procesos que constituyen zonas de riesgo y/o amenazas para los procesos de cambio, ante los cuales debemos permanecer alerta y desplegar toda la capacidad en defensa de nuestros procesos de transformación.  Declarar a los países de la ALBA como territorios de paz y libres de bases militares extrajeras es una propuesta de gran coherencia y defensa de la soberanía.

Con preocupación vemos el avance en la región de un modelo de crecimiento focalizado en megaproyectos, que avanzan sin el consentimiento de los pueblos y atentan contra sus derechos, soberanía y autodeterminación.  El auge de monumentales obras de infraestructura bajo el amparo de proyectos como IIRSA y el Plan Mesoamérica, involucran a países de toda América Latina, incluso países de la ALBA. Tales obras son el sustento para la profundización y ampliación de economías de enclave, basadas en la racionalidad extractivista, deprededadora en su relación con la naturaleza y reproductora de las condiciones de relegamiento de nuestros pueblos. Estas obras tienen un notorio impacto sobre las mujeres, en especial las indígenas, comprometen la soberanía alimentaria de esas localidades y alteran la geografía, los ecosistemas y los patrones de consumo tradicional; algunas de ellas abren paso a la depredación de los recursos localizados en la Amazonía y en los bosques tropicales de Centroamérica.

Creemos que es urgente que los gobiernos de la ALBA consideren colectivamente una crítica y distanciamiento de tales iniciativas del capitalismo neoliberal y asuman, sin ambigüedades, un nuevo enfoque de desarrollo congruente con la propuesta del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y con el proceso de cambios y estructurales que la ALBA conlleva.
Con inquietud hemos visto, asimismo, el relanzamiento del Fondo Monetario Internacional en varios foros internacionales, como instancia reguladora frente a la actual crisis; resulta ofensivo hacia nuestros pueblos ignorar la responsabilidad de esa institución no sólo en las dinámicas que condujeron a la propia crisis, sino también en la aplicación de las políticas neoliberales que aún nos afectan duramente.  Ratificamos nuestra convicción, expresada en el último Foro Social Mundial (Belém 2009), de que el enfrentamiento a la crisis demanda alternativas anticapitalistas, antirracistas,  anti-imperialistas, socialistas, feministas y ecologistas.

Es igualmente preocupante que se mantengan injustificadas expectativas en que la conclusión de la Ronda Doha de la OMC pueda resolver los problemas de acceso al mercado para los países ‘en desarrollo’. Los pueblos reclamamos el comercio justo y solidario frente al libre comercio; la apertura indiscriminada de nuestros mercados desplazó a las y los productores locales, la sustitución de importaciones fue demonizada para abrir nuestros mercados a los productos importados, la competencia se impuso a la lógica de la complementariedad y cooperación regional.

La ALBA es un espacio invaluable para el rescate y el desarrollo de las producciones locales que fortalezcan las relaciones entre los pueblos y favorezcan formas de gestión colectiva, definida en torno al interés social y a los derechos de la naturaleza, por lo mismo debería extender la influencia de su filosofía a los acuerdos internacionales  con otras regiones.

La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para la construcción de soberanía financiera. Recuperar el control sobre nuestros ahorros y recursos financieros y reorientar su utilización hacia nuestros objetivos estratégicos, con criterios de democratización y redistribución es fundamental. Resalta como mecanismo el Banco de la ALBA, que puede ser uno de los puntales para desarrollo de iniciativas económicas de carácter social y solidario de alcance regional, nacional y local, que se fundamenten en visiones de complementariedad entre los países y de justicia de género, integrando medidas eficaces para asegurar el acceso de las mujeres a los recursos y a la toma de decisiones. En igual sentido valoramos la importancia de la adopción del SUCRE como medio de intercambio soberano y eficaz en el comercio internacional entre nuestros países.

Finalmente, es un desafío común para los países de la ALBA avanzar en políticas y medidas conjuntas para:

Reconocer, dentro de las modalidades de trabajo, a las labores de autosustento y cuidado humano no remunerado que se realiza en los hogares. Los Estados deberían comprometerse a facilitar servicios e infraestructura para la atención pública y comunitaria de las necesidades básicas de todos los grupos dependientes (niñas/os, personas con discapacidad, adultas/os mayores), definir horarios de trabajo adecuados, impulsando la corresponsabilidad y reciprocidad de hombres y mujeres en el trabajo doméstico y en las obligaciones familiares, así como extender la seguridad social a quienes hacen esas labores.

Impulsar reformas agrarias integrales y sostenibles, con una visión holística de la tierra como fuente de vida, que propicien la diversidad económica y productiva, la redistribución y la prohibición del latifundio.

Impulsar la integración energética de América Latina y El Caribe bajo los principios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien, priorizando dentro de las estrategias de cooperación, proyectos de generación de energías limpias para fortalecer las capacidades de las pequeñas unidades productivas y las condiciones de vida de las poblaciones más empobrecidas.

ALBA, un nuevo amanecer para nuestros pueblos
con igualdad para las mujeres!

Red Latinoamericana Mujeres Transformando la Economía –REMTE-
Articulación de Mujeres de la CLOC- Vía Campesina
Federación de Mujeres Cubanas
Federación Democrática Internacional de Mujeres
FEDAEPS


Dirigido a la Cumbre de la Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América –ALBA- Cochabamba, 16 y 17 de octubre 2009 La ALBA es coincidente en su propuesta con principios y reivindicaciones históricas planteadas por el movimiento de mujeres. Sus principios de solidaridad, here cooperación, generic reciprocidad, complementariedad, diversidad e igualdad, han sido la base de las prácticas y contribuciones económicas de las mujeres, ligadas prioritariamente a la reproducción integral de procesos y condiciones de vida, y son también el eje de nuestras visiones sobre un nuevo sistema económico. Así, la ALBA confluye con la aspiración de las mujeres latinoamericanas y caribeñas de levantar una sociedad integrada desde una perspectiva incluyente, que recoja y potencie la policroma diversidad de sus pueblos, superando injusticias y desigualdades. Nosotras, que participamos activamente en las luchas y resistencias contra los proyectos de integración pautados por el capital, reconocemos a la ALBA como expresión de la búsqueda de un proyecto propio, en el cual los movimientos sociales y los pueblos, con nuestra participación activa, podamos contribuir y consensuar un proceso de construcción de sociedades alternativas. Apreciamos el potencial de la ALBA para plantear un proyecto latinoamericano basado en transformaciones mayores: el socialismo del siglo XXI –que, como lo han asumido ya algunos presidentes, ‘solo podrá ser feminista’-; el paradigma del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la riqueza de la plurinacionalidad, que redefinen ya los estados de algunos de sus países miembros. Valoramos el hecho de que, en su corta vida, la ALBA registra ya logros en el terreno del intercambio solidario, en los dominios de educación, salud,  cooperación energética; es notable su proyección como espacio de concertación política y resolución de conflictos, de construcción de posiciones comunes, “en defensa de la independencia, la soberanía, la autodeterminación y la identidad de los países que la integran y de los intereses y las aspiraciones de los pueblos del Sur frente a los intentos de dominación política y económica”. Como parte de los movimientos sociales y como protagonistas históricas de experiencias no mercantilizadas, hemos planteado, al igual que la ALBA, que nuestras sociedades se construyan sobre la base de la “unión de los pueblos, la autodeterminación, la complementariedad económica, el comercio justo, la lucha contra la pobreza, la preservación de la identidad cultural, la integración energética, la defensa del ambiente y la justicia”; desde esta coincidencia de perspectivas nos proponemos mancomunar esfuerzos para lograr los objetivos comunes de construcción de una Latinoamérica autodeterminada, solidaria, libre de relaciones patriarcales y levantada bajo los designios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien. La consolidación de la ALBA como un espacio de soberanía política, económica, social, institucional, cultural, de la diversidad, de lo popular y de lo público demanda cambios de fondo en la manera de pensar, diseñar, decidir y materializar las políticas. Se trata de construir un nuevo paradigma societal, que va más allá de rediseñar el existente. Este es un reto que requiere aunar toda la inteligencia, comprensión y capacidad de diálogo entre los gobiernos de los países de la ALBA y los movimientos sociales, de manera fluida y permanente. La creación del Consejo Ministerial de Mujeres y del Consejo de Movimientos Sociales, es paso importante para la articulación efectiva entre los gobiernos y los pueblos.  Saludamos esta decisión, a la vez que ofrecemos nuestro concurso para contribuir con el desarrollo de una perspectiva feminista en el conjunto de iniciativas y de políticas de la ALBA, como también para visualizar las medidas específicas que deberían tomarse para propiciar la igualdad de las mujeres y para erradicar el patriarcado. Consideramos que los cambios que plantea la ALBA son alcanzables en tanto se amplíen y profundicen cambios como los que ya han emprendido algunos de nuestros países con un sentido de transformación estructural, que incluyen el reconocimiento de la diversidad económica y productiva y en ese marco la visibilización de las mujeres como actoras económicas, la equiparación entre el trabajo productivo y el reproductivo, el desarrollo de éticas de igualdad, diversidades y no violencia, el reconocimiento de la soberanía alimentaria, entre otros aspectos que podrían convertirse en punto común para todas las políticas públicas de la ALBA, colocando como eje el Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la sostenibilidad de la vida. Con especial interés seguimos la propuesta de construir una Zona Económica de Desarrollo Compartido entre los países de la ALBA; consideramos que a su amparo y bajo un enfoque de economía diversa, social y solidaria, se pueden desarrollar iniciativas compartidas de soberanía alimentaria, de reconocimiento y desarrollo de los conocimientos de las mujeres,  de rescate y curaduría de las semillas nativas y de transgenosis natural, de producción y distribución cooperativa y asociativa, de generación de infraestructura y tecnologías orientadas al cuidado humano y ambiental. La creación de núcleos de desarrollo endógeno binacionales o trinacionales, que transformen las condiciones de trabajo y empleo para las mujeres del campo y la ciudad, sería una importante experiencia de integración y preservación regional de la cultura productiva y solidaria acumulada históricamente por nuestros pueblos. De igual manera, la creación de un Instituto de Estudios Feministas de los países de la ALBA, que organice intercambios de conocimientos y saberes entre los países, desarrolle proyectos de investigación sobre políticas públicas e internacionales, recupere los múltiples aportes de las mujeres a lo largo de nuestra historia, y juegue un papel activo en la generación de propuestas y desarrollo de asesorías a los gobiernos en esta materia, contribuirá significativamente al fortalecimiento de nuestro proceso de cambio regional. La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para el impulso de un proyecto de integración alternativo que no debe repetir el déficit democrático de las propuestas precedentes. La participación en la concepción, diseño y ejecución de proyectos debe ser una divisa, por ello proponemos, como forma inicial de materialización de esa participación, que en la  instancia técnica del Consejo Social encargada de elaborar estudios, preparar propuestas y formular proyectos relacionados con las políticas sociales de la ALBA, así como de coordinar y darles seguimiento, se contemple la participación paritaria de las mujeres, la misma que deberá hacerse extensiva a todas las instancias, incluidas aquellas de decisión, gestión y representación. La ALBA tiene la particularidad de reunir a países de la Región Andina, Centroamérica y el Caribe, con problemáticas comunes y diferentes en materia de salud y vulnerabilidad frente a los fenómenos climáticos. Sería pertinente la creación de redes de intercambio y ayuda de las organizaciones de mujeres ante situaciones de emergencia epidemiológica y catástrofes naturales. Si bien el surgimiento y desarrollo de la ALBA ha sido un factor reconfortante en la senda de nuestras luchas, persisten en el mundo y en la región tendencias y procesos que constituyen zonas de riesgo y/o amenazas para los procesos de cambio, ante los cuales debemos permanecer alerta y desplegar toda la capacidad en defensa de nuestros procesos de transformación.  Declarar a los países de la ALBA como territorios de paz y libres de bases militares extrajeras es una propuesta de gran coherencia y defensa de la soberanía. Con preocupación vemos el avance en la región de un modelo de crecimiento focalizado en megaproyectos, que avanzan sin el consentimiento de los pueblos y atentan contra sus derechos, soberanía y autodeterminación.  El auge de monumentales obras de infraestructura bajo el amparo de proyectos como IIRSA y el Plan Mesoamérica, involucran a pa
íses de toda América Latina, incluso países de la ALBA. Tales obras son el sustento para la profundización y ampliación de economías de enclave, basadas en la racionalidad extractivista, deprededadora en su relación con la naturaleza y reproductora de las condiciones de relegamiento de nuestros pueblos. Estas obras tienen un notorio impacto sobre las mujeres, en especial las indígenas, comprometen la soberanía alimentaria de esas localidades y alteran la geografía, los ecosistemas y los patrones de consumo tradicional; algunas de ellas abren paso a la depredación de los recursos localizados en la Amazonía y en los bosques tropicales de Centroamérica. Creemos que es urgente que los gobiernos de la ALBA consideren colectivamente una crítica y distanciamiento de tales iniciativas del capitalismo neoliberal y asuman, sin ambigüedades, un nuevo enfoque de desarrollo congruente con la propuesta del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y con el proceso de cambios y estructurales que la ALBA conlleva. Con inquietud hemos visto, asimismo, el relanzamiento del Fondo Monetario Internacional en varios foros internacionales, como instancia reguladora frente a la actual crisis; resulta ofensivo hacia nuestros pueblos ignorar la responsabilidad de esa institución no sólo en las dinámicas que condujeron a la propia crisis, sino también en la aplicación de las políticas neoliberales que aún nos afectan duramente.  Ratificamos nuestra convicción, expresada en el último Foro Social Mundial (Belém 2009), de que el enfrentamiento a la crisis demanda alternativas anticapitalistas, antirracistas,  anti-imperialistas, socialistas, feministas y ecologistas. Es igualmente preocupante que se mantengan injustificadas expectativas en que la conclusión de la Ronda Doha de la OMC pueda resolver los problemas de acceso al mercado para los países ‘en desarrollo’. Los pueblos reclamamos el comercio justo y solidario frente al libre comercio; la apertura indiscriminada de nuestros mercados desplazó a las y los productores locales, la sustitución de importaciones fue demonizada para abrir nuestros mercados a los productos importados, la competencia se impuso a la lógica de la complementariedad y cooperación regional. La ALBA es un espacio invaluable para el rescate y el desarrollo de las producciones locales que fortalezcan las relaciones entre los pueblos y favorezcan formas de gestión colectiva, definida en torno al interés social y a los derechos de la naturaleza, por lo mismo debería extender la influencia de su filosofía a los acuerdos internacionales  con otras regiones. La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para la construcción de soberanía financiera. Recuperar el control sobre nuestros ahorros y recursos financieros y reorientar su utilización hacia nuestros objetivos estratégicos, con criterios de democratización y redistribución es fundamental. Resalta como mecanismo el Banco de la ALBA, que puede ser uno de los puntales para desarrollo de iniciativas económicas de carácter social y solidario de alcance regional, nacional y local, que se fundamenten en visiones de complementariedad entre los países y de justicia de género, integrando medidas eficaces para asegurar el acceso de las mujeres a los recursos y a la toma de decisiones. En igual sentido valoramos la importancia de la adopción del SUCRE como medio de intercambio soberano y eficaz en el comercio internacional entre nuestros países. Finalmente, es un desafío común para los países de la ALBA avanzar en políticas y medidas conjuntas para: Reconocer, dentro de las modalidades de trabajo, a las labores de autosustento y cuidado humano no remunerado que se realiza en los hogares. Los Estados deberían comprometerse a facilitar servicios e infraestructura para la atención pública y comunitaria de las necesidades básicas de todos los grupos dependientes (niñas/os, personas con discapacidad, adultas/os mayores), definir horarios de trabajo adecuados, impulsando la corresponsabilidad y reciprocidad de hombres y mujeres en el trabajo doméstico y en las obligaciones familiares, así como extender la seguridad social a quienes hacen esas labores. Impulsar reformas agrarias integrales y sostenibles, con una visión holística de la tierra como fuente de vida, que propicien la diversidad económica y productiva, la redistribución y la prohibición del latifundio. Impulsar la integración energética de América Latina y El Caribe bajo los principios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien, priorizando dentro de las estrategias de cooperación, proyectos de generación de energías limpias para fortalecer las capacidades de las pequeñas unidades productivas y las condiciones de vida de las poblaciones más empobrecidas. ALBA, un nuevo amanecer para nuestros pueblos con igualdad para las mujeres! Red Latinoamericana Mujeres Transformando la Economía –REMTE- Articulación de Mujeres de la CLOC- Vía Campesina Federación de Mujeres Cubanas Federación Democrática Internacional de Mujeres FEDAEPS

Dirigido a la Cumbre de la Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América –ALBA-

Cochabamba, 16 y 17 de octubre 2009

La ALBA es coincidente en su propuesta con principios y reivindicaciones históricas planteadas por el movimiento de mujeres. Sus principios de solidaridad, and cooperación, reciprocidad, complementariedad, diversidad e igualdad, han sido la base de las prácticas y contribuciones económicas de las mujeres, ligadas prioritariamente a la reproducción integral de procesos y condiciones de vida, y son también el eje de nuestras visiones sobre un nuevo sistema económico. Así, la ALBA confluye con la aspiración de las mujeres latinoamericanas y caribeñas de levantar una sociedad integrada desde una perspectiva incluyente, que recoja y potencie la policroma diversidad de sus pueblos, superando injusticias y desigualdades. Nosotras, que participamos activamente en las luchas y resistencias contra los proyectos de integración pautados por el capital, reconocemos a la ALBA como expresión de la búsqueda de un proyecto propio, en el cual los movimientos sociales y los pueblos, con nuestra participación activa, podamos contribuir y consensuar un proceso de construcción de sociedades alternativas. Apreciamos el potencial de la ALBA para plantear un proyecto latinoamericano basado en transformaciones mayores: el socialismo del siglo XXI –que, como lo han asumido ya algunos presidentes, ‘solo podrá ser feminista’-; el paradigma del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la riqueza de la plurinacionalidad, que redefinen ya los estados de algunos de sus países miembros. Valoramos el hecho de que, en su corta vida, la ALBA registra ya logros en el terreno del intercambio solidario, en los dominios de educación, salud,  cooperación energética; es notable su proyección como espacio de concertación política y resolución de conflictos, de construcción de posiciones comunes, “en defensa de la independencia, la soberanía, la autodeterminación y la identidad de los países que la integran y de los intereses y las aspiraciones de los pueblos del Sur frente a los intentos de dominación política y económica”. Como parte de los movimientos sociales y como protagonistas históricas de experiencias no mercantilizadas, hemos planteado, al igual que la ALBA, que nuestras sociedades se construyan sobre la base de la “unión de los pueblos, la autodeterminación, la complementariedad económica, el comercio justo, la lucha contra la pobreza, la preservación de la identidad cultural, la integración energética, la defensa del ambiente y la justicia”; desde esta coincidencia de perspectivas nos proponemos mancomunar esfuerzos para lograr los objetivos comunes de construcción de una Latinoamérica autodeterminada, solidaria, libre de relaciones patriarcales y levantada bajo los designios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien. La consolidación de la ALBA como un espacio de soberanía política, económica, social, institucional, cultural, de la diversidad, de lo popular y de lo público demanda cambios de fondo en la manera de pensar, diseñar, decidir y materializar las políticas. Se trata de construir un nuevo paradigma societal, que va más allá de rediseñar el existente. Este es un reto que requiere aunar toda la inteligencia, comprensión y capacidad de diálogo entre los gobiernos de los países de la ALBA y los movimientos sociales, de manera fluida y permanente. La creación del Consejo Ministerial de Mujeres y del Consejo de Movimientos Sociales, es paso importante para la articulación efectiva entre los gobiernos y los pueblos.  Saludamos esta decisión, a la vez que ofrecemos nuestro concurso para contribuir con el desarrollo de una perspectiva feminista en el conjunto de iniciativas y de políticas de la ALBA, como también para visualizar las medidas específicas que deberían tomarse para propiciar la igualdad de las mujeres y para erradicar el patriarcado. Consideramos que los cambios que plantea la ALBA son alcanzables en tanto se amplíen y profundicen cambios como los que ya han emprendido algunos de nuestros países con un sentido de transformación estructural, que incluyen el reconocimiento de la diversidad económica y productiva y en ese marco la visibilización de las mujeres como actoras económicas, la equiparación entre el trabajo productivo y el reproductivo, el desarrollo de éticas de igualdad, diversidades y no violencia, el reconocimiento de la soberanía alimentaria, entre otros aspectos que podrían convertirse en punto común para todas las políticas públicas de la ALBA, colocando como eje el Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la sostenibilidad de la vida. Con especial interés seguimos la propuesta de construir una Zona Económica de Desarrollo Compartido entre los países de la ALBA; consideramos que a su amparo y bajo un enfoque de economía diversa, social y solidaria, se pueden desarrollar iniciativas compartidas de soberanía alimentaria, de reconocimiento y desarrollo de los conocimientos de las mujeres,  de rescate y curaduría de las semillas nativas y de transgenosis natural, de producción y distribución cooperativa y asociativa, de generación de infraestructura y tecnologías orientadas al cuidado humano y ambiental. La creación de núcleos de desarrollo endógeno binacionales o trinacionales, que transformen las condiciones de trabajo y empleo para las mujeres del campo y la ciudad, sería una importante experiencia de integración y preservación regional de la cultura productiva y solidaria acumulada históricamente por nuestros pueblos. De igual manera, la creación de un Instituto de Estudios Feministas de los países de la ALBA, que organice intercambios de conocimientos y saberes entre los países, desarrolle proyectos de investigación sobre políticas públicas e internacionales, recupere los múltiples aportes de las mujeres a lo largo de nuestra historia, y juegue un papel activo en la generación de propuestas y desarrollo de asesorías a los gobiernos en esta materia, contribuirá significativamente al fortalecimiento de nuestro proceso de cambio regional. La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para el impulso de un proyecto de integración alternativo que no debe repetir el déficit democrático de las propuestas precedentes. La participación en la concepción, diseño y ejecución de proyectos debe ser una divisa, por ello proponemos, como forma inicial de materialización de esa participación, que en la  instancia técnica del Consejo Social encargada de elaborar estudios, preparar propuestas y formular proyectos relacionados con las políticas sociales de la ALBA, así como de coordinar y darles seguimiento, se contemple la participación paritaria de las mujeres, la misma que deberá hacerse extensiva a todas las instancias, incluidas aquellas de decisión, gestión y representación. La ALBA tiene la particularidad de reunir a países de la Región Andina, Centroamérica y el Caribe, con problemáticas comunes y diferentes en materia de salud y vulnerabilidad frente a los fenómenos climáticos. Sería pertinente la creación de redes de intercambio y ayuda de las organizaciones de mujeres ante situaciones de emergencia epidemiológica y catástrofes naturales. Si bien el surgimiento y desarrollo de la ALBA ha sido un factor reconfortante en la senda de nuestras luchas, persisten en el mundo y en la región tendencias y procesos que constituyen zonas de riesgo y/o amenazas para los procesos de cambio, ante los cuales debemos permanecer alerta y desplegar toda la capacidad en defensa de nuestros procesos de transformación.  Declarar a los países de la ALBA como territorios de paz y libres de bases militares extrajeras es una propuesta de gran coherencia y defensa de la soberanía. Con preocupación vemos el avance en la región de un modelo de crecimiento focalizado en megaproyectos, que avanzan sin el consentimiento de los pueblos y atentan contra sus derechos, soberanía y autodeterminación.  El auge de monumentales obras de infraestructura bajo el amparo de proyectos como IIRSA y el Plan Mesoamérica, involucran a países de toda América Latina, incluso países de la ALBA. Tales obras son el sustento para la profundización y ampliación de economías de enc
lave, basadas en la racionalidad extractivista, deprededadora en su relación con la naturaleza y reproductora de las condiciones de relegamiento de nuestros pueblos. Estas obras tienen un notorio impacto sobre las mujeres, en especial las indígenas, comprometen la soberanía alimentaria de esas localidades y alteran la geografía, los ecosistemas y los patrones de consumo tradicional; algunas de ellas abren paso a la depredación de los recursos localizados en la Amazonía y en los bosques tropicales de Centroamérica. Creemos que es urgente que los gobiernos de la ALBA consideren colectivamente una crítica y distanciamiento de tales iniciativas del capitalismo neoliberal y asuman, sin ambigüedades, un nuevo enfoque de desarrollo congruente con la propuesta del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y con el proceso de cambios y estructurales que la ALBA conlleva. Con inquietud hemos visto, asimismo, el relanzamiento del Fondo Monetario Internacional en varios foros internacionales, como instancia reguladora frente a la actual crisis; resulta ofensivo hacia nuestros pueblos ignorar la responsabilidad de esa institución no sólo en las dinámicas que condujeron a la propia crisis, sino también en la aplicación de las políticas neoliberales que aún nos afectan duramente.  Ratificamos nuestra convicción, expresada en el último Foro Social Mundial (Belém 2009), de que el enfrentamiento a la crisis demanda alternativas anticapitalistas, antirracistas,  anti-imperialistas, socialistas, feministas y ecologistas. Es igualmente preocupante que se mantengan injustificadas expectativas en que la conclusión de la Ronda Doha de la OMC pueda resolver los problemas de acceso al mercado para los países ‘en desarrollo’. Los pueblos reclamamos el comercio justo y solidario frente al libre comercio; la apertura indiscriminada de nuestros mercados desplazó a las y los productores locales, la sustitución de importaciones fue demonizada para abrir nuestros mercados a los productos importados, la competencia se impuso a la lógica de la complementariedad y cooperación regional. La ALBA es un espacio invaluable para el rescate y el desarrollo de las producciones locales que fortalezcan las relaciones entre los pueblos y favorezcan formas de gestión colectiva, definida en torno al interés social y a los derechos de la naturaleza, por lo mismo debería extender la influencia de su filosofía a los acuerdos internacionales  con otras regiones. La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para la construcción de soberanía financiera. Recuperar el control sobre nuestros ahorros y recursos financieros y reorientar su utilización hacia nuestros objetivos estratégicos, con criterios de democratización y redistribución es fundamental. Resalta como mecanismo el Banco de la ALBA, que puede ser uno de los puntales para desarrollo de iniciativas económicas de carácter social y solidario de alcance regional, nacional y local, que se fundamenten en visiones de complementariedad entre los países y de justicia de género, integrando medidas eficaces para asegurar el acceso de las mujeres a los recursos y a la toma de decisiones. En igual sentido valoramos la importancia de la adopción del SUCRE como medio de intercambio soberano y eficaz en el comercio internacional entre nuestros países. Finalmente, es un desafío común para los países de la ALBA avanzar en políticas y medidas conjuntas para: Reconocer, dentro de las modalidades de trabajo, a las labores de autosustento y cuidado humano no remunerado que se realiza en los hogares. Los Estados deberían comprometerse a facilitar servicios e infraestructura para la atención pública y comunitaria de las necesidades básicas de todos los grupos dependientes (niñas/os, personas con discapacidad, adultas/os mayores), definir horarios de trabajo adecuados, impulsando la corresponsabilidad y reciprocidad de hombres y mujeres en el trabajo doméstico y en las obligaciones familiares, así como extender la seguridad social a quienes hacen esas labores. Impulsar reformas agrarias integrales y sostenibles, con una visión holística de la tierra como fuente de vida, que propicien la diversidad económica y productiva, la redistribución y la prohibición del latifundio. Impulsar la integración energética de América Latina y El Caribe bajo los principios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien, priorizando dentro de las estrategias de cooperación, proyectos de generación de energías limpias para fortalecer las capacidades de las pequeñas unidades productivas y las condiciones de vida de las poblaciones más empobrecidas. ALBA, un nuevo amanecer para nuestros pueblos con igualdad para las mujeres!

Red Latinoamericana Mujeres Transformando la Economía –REMTE- Articulación de Mujeres de la CLOC- Vía Campesina Federación de Mujeres Cubanas Federación Democrática Internacional de Mujeres FEDAEPS

Dirigido a la Cumbre de la Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América –ALBA-

Cochabamba,
16 y 17 de octubre 2009

La ALBA es coincidente en su propuesta con principios y reivindicaciones históricas planteadas por el movimiento de mujeres. Sus principios de solidaridad, sovaldi sale cooperación, buy reciprocidad, complementariedad, diversidad e igualdad, han sido la base de las prácticas y contribuciones económicas de las mujeres, ligadas prioritariamente a la reproducción integral de procesos y condiciones de vida, y son también el eje de nuestras visiones sobre un nuevo sistema económico. Así, la ALBA confluye con la aspiración de las mujeres latinoamericanas y caribeñas de levantar una sociedad integrada desde una perspectiva incluyente, que recoja y potencie la policroma diversidad de sus pueblos, superando injusticias y desigualdades.

Nosotras, que participamos activamente en las luchas y resistencias contra los proyectos de integración pautados por el capital, reconocemos a la ALBA como expresión de la búsqueda de un proyecto propio, en el cual los movimientos sociales y los pueblos, con nuestra participación activa, podamos contribuir y consensuar un proceso de construcción de sociedades alternativas.

Apreciamos el potencial de la ALBA para plantear un proyecto latinoamericano basado en transformaciones mayores: el socialismo del siglo XXI –que, como lo han asumido ya algunos presidentes, ‘solo podrá ser feminista’-; el paradigma del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la riqueza de la plurinacionalidad, que redefinen ya los estados de algunos de sus países miembros.

Valoramos el hecho de que, en su corta vida, la ALBA registra ya logros en el terreno del intercambio solidario, en los dominios de educación, salud,  cooperación energética; es notable su proyección como espacio de concertación política y resolución de conflictos, de construcción de posiciones comunes, “en defensa de la independencia, la soberanía, la autodeterminación y la identidad de los países que la integran y de los intereses y las aspiraciones de los pueblos del Sur frente a los intentos de dominación política y económica”. Como parte de los movimientos sociales y como protagonistas históricas de experiencias no mercantilizadas, hemos planteado, al igual que la ALBA, que nuestras sociedades se construyan sobre la base de la “unión de los pueblos, la autodeterminación, la complementariedad económica, el comercio justo, la lucha contra la pobreza, la preservación de la identidad cultural, la integración energética, la defensa del ambiente y la justicia”; desde esta coincidencia de perspectivas nos proponemos mancomunar esfuerzos para lograr los objetivos comunes de construcción de una Latinoamérica autodeterminada, solidaria, libre de relaciones patriarcales y levantada bajo los designios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien. La consolidación de la ALBA como un espacio de soberanía política, económica, social, institucional, cultural, de la diversidad, de lo popular y de lo público demanda cambios de fondo en la manera de pensar, diseñar, decidir y materializar las políticas. Se trata de construir un nuevo paradigma societal, que va más allá de rediseñar el existente. Este es un reto que requiere aunar toda la inteligencia, comprensión y capacidad de diálogo entre los gobiernos de los países de la ALBA y los movimientos sociales, de manera fluida y permanente. La creación del Consejo Ministerial de Mujeres y del Consejo de Movimientos Sociales, es paso importante para la articulación efectiva entre los gobiernos y los pueblos.  Saludamos esta decisión, a la vez que ofrecemos nuestro concurso para contribuir con el desarrollo de una perspectiva feminista en el conjunto de iniciativas y de políticas de la ALBA, como también para visualizar las medidas específicas que deberían tomarse para propiciar la igualdad de las mujeres y para erradicar el patriarcado. Consideramos que los cambios que plantea la ALBA son alcanzables en tanto se amplíen y profundicen cambios como los que ya han emprendido algunos de nuestros países con un sentido de transformación estructural, que incluyen el reconocimiento de la diversidad económica y productiva y en ese marco la visibilización de las mujeres como actoras económicas, la equiparación entre el trabajo productivo y el reproductivo, el desarrollo de éticas de igualdad, diversidades y no violencia, el reconocimiento de la soberanía alimentaria, entre otros aspectos que podrían convertirse en punto común para todas las políticas públicas de la ALBA, colocando como eje el Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la sostenibilidad de la vida. Con especial interés seguimos la propuesta de construir una Zona Económica de Desarrollo Compartido entre los países de la ALBA; consideramos que a su amparo y bajo un enfoque de economía diversa, social y solidaria, se pueden desarrollar iniciativas compartidas de soberanía alimentaria, de reconocimiento y desarrollo de los conocimientos de las mujeres,  de rescate y curaduría de las semillas nativas y de transgenosis natural, de producción y distribución cooperativa y asociativa, de generación de infraestructura y tecnologías orientadas al cuidado humano y ambiental. La creación de núcleos de desarrollo endógeno binacionales o trinacionales, que transformen las condiciones de trabajo y empleo para las mujeres del campo y la ciudad, sería una importante experiencia de integración y preservación regional de la cultura productiva y solidaria acumulada históricamente por nuestros pueblos. De igual manera, la creación de un Instituto de Estudios Feministas de los países de la ALBA, que organice intercambios de conocimientos y saberes entre los países, desarrolle proyectos de investigación sobre políticas públicas e internacionales, recupere los múltiples aportes de las mujeres a lo largo de nuestra historia, y juegue un papel activo en la generación de propuestas y desarrollo de asesorías a los gobiernos en esta materia, contribuirá significativamente al fortalecimiento de nuestro proceso de cambio regional. La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para el impulso de un proyecto de integración alternativo que no debe repetir el déficit democrático de las propuestas precedentes. La participación en la concepción, diseño y ejecución de proyectos debe ser una divisa, por ello proponemos, como forma inicial de materialización de esa participación, que en la  instancia técnica del Consejo Social encargada de elaborar estudios, preparar propuestas y formular proyectos relacionados con las políticas sociales de la ALBA, así como de coordinar y darles seguimiento, se contemple la participación paritaria de las mujeres, la misma que deberá hacerse extensiva a todas las instancias, incluidas aquellas de decisión, gestión y representación. La ALBA tiene la particularidad de reunir a países de la Región Andina, Centroamérica y el Caribe, con problemáticas comunes y diferentes en materia de salud y vulnerabilidad frente a los fenómenos climáticos. Sería pertinente la creación de redes de intercambio y ayuda de las organizaciones de mujeres ante situaciones de emergencia epidemiológica y catástrofes naturales. Si bien el surgimiento y desarrollo de la ALBA ha sido un factor reconfortante en la senda de nuestras luchas, persisten en el mundo y en la región tendencias y procesos que constituyen zonas de riesgo y/o amenazas para los procesos de cambio, ante los cuales debemos permanecer alerta y desplegar toda la capacidad en defensa de nuestros procesos de transformación.  Declarar a los países de la ALBA como territorios de paz y libres de bases militares extrajeras es una propuesta de gran coherencia y defensa de la soberanía. Con preocupación vemos el avance en la región de un modelo de crecimiento focalizado en megaproyectos, que avanzan sin el consentimiento de los pueblos y atentan contra sus derechos, soberanía y autodeterminación.  El auge de monumentales obras de infraestructura bajo el amparo de proyectos como IIRSA y el Plan Mesoamérica, involucran a países de toda América Latina, incluso países de la ALBA. Tales obras son el sustento para la profundización y ampliación de economías de enclave, basadas en la racionalidad extractivista, deprededadora en su relación con la naturaleza y reproductora de las condiciones de relegamiento de nuestros pueblos. Estas obras tienen un notorio impacto sobre las mujeres, en especial las indígenas, comprometen la soberanía alimentaria de esas localidades y alteran la geografía, los ecosistemas y los patrones de consumo tradicional; algunas de ellas abren paso a la depredación de los recursos localizados en la Amazonía y en los bosques tropicales de Centroamérica. Creemos que es urgente que los gobiernos de la ALBA consideren colectivamente una crítica y distanciamiento de tales iniciativas del capitalismo neoliberal y asuman, sin ambigüedades, un nuevo enfoque de desarrollo congruente con la propuesta del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y con el proceso de cambios y estructurales que la ALBA conlleva. Con inquietud hemos visto, asimismo, el relanzamiento del Fondo Monetario Internacional en varios foros internacionales, como instancia reguladora frente a la actual crisis; resulta ofensivo hacia nuestros pueblos ignorar la responsabilidad de esa institución no sólo en las dinámicas que condujeron a la propia crisis, sino también en la aplicación de las políticas neoliberales que aún nos afectan duramente.  Ratificamos nuestra convicción, expresada en el último Foro Social Mundial (Belém 2009), de que el enfrentamiento a la crisis demanda alternativas anticapitalistas, antirracistas,  anti-imperialistas, s
ocialistas, feministas y ecologistas. Es igualmente preocupante que se mantengan injustificadas expectativas en que la conclusión de la Ronda Doha de la OMC pueda resolver los problemas de acceso al mercado para los países ‘en desarrollo’. Los pueblos reclamamos el comercio justo y solidario frente al libre comercio; la apertura indiscriminada de nuestros mercados desplazó a las y los productores locales, la sustitución de importaciones fue demonizada para abrir nuestros mercados a los productos importados, la competencia se impuso a la lógica de la complementariedad y cooperación regional. La ALBA es un espacio invaluable para el rescate y el desarrollo de las producciones locales que fortalezcan las relaciones entre los pueblos y favorezcan formas de gestión colectiva, definida en torno al interés social y a los derechos de la naturaleza, por lo mismo debería extender la influencia de su filosofía a los acuerdos internacionales  con otras regiones. La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para la construcción de soberanía financiera. Recuperar el control sobre nuestros ahorros y recursos financieros y reorientar su utilización hacia nuestros objetivos estratégicos, con criterios de democratización y redistribución es fundamental. Resalta como mecanismo el Banco de la ALBA, que puede ser uno de los puntales para desarrollo de iniciativas económicas de carácter social y solidario de alcance regional, nacional y local, que se fundamenten en visiones de complementariedad entre los países y de justicia de género, integrando medidas eficaces para asegurar el acceso de las mujeres a los recursos y a la toma de decisiones. En igual sentido valoramos la importancia de la adopción del SUCRE como medio de intercambio soberano y eficaz en el comercio internacional entre nuestros países. Finalmente, es un desafío común para los países de la ALBA avanzar en políticas y medidas conjuntas para: Reconocer, dentro de las modalidades de trabajo, a las labores de autosustento y cuidado humano no remunerado que se realiza en los hogares. Los Estados deberían comprometerse a facilitar servicios e infraestructura para la atención pública y comunitaria de las necesidades básicas de todos los grupos dependientes (niñas/os, personas con discapacidad, adultas/os mayores), definir horarios de trabajo adecuados, impulsando la corresponsabilidad y reciprocidad de hombres y mujeres en el trabajo doméstico y en las obligaciones familiares, así como extender la seguridad social a quienes hacen esas labores. Impulsar reformas agrarias integrales y sostenibles, con una visión holística de la tierra como fuente de vida, que propicien la diversidad económica y productiva, la redistribución y la prohibición del latifundio. Impulsar la integración energética de América Latina y El Caribe bajo los principios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien, priorizando dentro de las estrategias de cooperación, proyectos de generación de energías limpias para fortalecer las capacidades de las pequeñas unidades productivas y las condiciones de vida de las poblaciones más empobrecidas. ALBA, un nuevo amanecer para nuestros pueblos con igualdad para las mujeres!

Red Latinoamericana Mujeres Transformando la Economía –REMTE- Articulación de Mujeres de la CLOC- Vía Campesina Federación de Mujeres Cubanas Federación Democrática Internacional de Mujeres FEDAEPS

Dirigido a la Cumbre de la Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América –ALBA-

Cochabamba, medical 16 y 17 de octubre 2009

La ALBA es coincidente en su propuesta con principios y reivindicaciones históricas planteadas por el movimiento de mujeres. Sus principios de solidaridad, cooperación, reciprocidad, complementariedad, diversidad e igualdad, han sido la base de las prácticas y contribuciones económicas de las mujeres, ligadas prioritariamente a la reproducción integral de procesos y condiciones de vida, y son también el eje de nuestras visiones sobre un nuevo sistema económico. Así, la ALBA confluye con la aspiración de las mujeres latinoamericanas y caribeñas de levantar una sociedad integrada desde una perspectiva incluyente, que recoja y potencie la policroma diversidad de sus pueblos, superando injusticias y desigualdades.

Nosotras, que participamos activamente en las luchas y resistencias contra los proyectos de integración pautados por el capital, reconocemos a la ALBA como expresión de la búsqueda de un proyecto propio, en el cual los movimientos sociales y los pueblos, con nuestra participación activa, podamos contribuir y consensuar un proceso de construcción de sociedades alternativas.

Apreciamos el potencial de la ALBA para plantear un proyecto latinoamericano basado en transformaciones mayores: el socialismo del siglo XXI –que, como lo han asumido ya algunos presidentes, ‘solo podrá ser feminista’-; el paradigma del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la riqueza de la plurinacionalidad, que redefinen ya los estados de algunos de sus países miembros.

Valoramos el hecho de que, en su corta vida, la ALBA registra ya logros en el terreno del intercambio solidario, en los dominios de educación, salud,  cooperación energética; es notable su proyección como espacio de concertación política y resolución de conflictos, de construcción de posiciones comunes, “en defensa de la independencia, la soberanía, la autodeterminación y la identidad de los países que la integran y de los intereses y las aspiraciones de los pueblos del Sur frente a los intentos de dominación política y económica”.

Como parte de los movimientos sociales y como protagonistas históricas de experiencias no mercantilizadas, hemos planteado, al igual que la ALBA, que nuestras sociedades se construyan sobre la base de la “unión de los pueblos, la autodeterminación, la complementariedad económica, el comercio justo, la lucha contra la pobreza, la preservación de la identidad cultural, la integración energética, la defensa del ambiente y la justicia”; desde esta coincidencia de perspectivas nos proponemos mancomunar esfuerzos para lograr los objetivos comunes de construcción de una Latinoamérica autodeterminada, solidaria, libre de relaciones patriarcales y levantada bajo los designios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien.

La consolidación de la ALBA como un espacio de soberanía política, económica, social, institucional, cultural, de la diversidad, de lo popular y de lo público demanda cambios de fondo en la manera de pensar, diseñar, decidir y materializar las políticas. Se trata de construir un nuevo paradigma societal, que va más allá de rediseñar el existente. Este es un reto que requiere aunar toda la inteligencia, comprensión y capacidad de diálogo entre los gobiernos de los países de la ALBA y los movimientos sociales, de manera fluida y permanente.

La creación del Consejo Ministerial de Mujeres y del Consejo de Movimientos Sociales, es paso importante para la articulación efectiva entre los gobiernos y los pueblos.  Saludamos esta decisión, a la vez que ofrecemos nuestro concurso para contribuir con el desarrollo de una perspectiva feminista en el conjunto de iniciativas y de políticas de la ALBA, como también para visualizar las medidas específicas que deberían tomarse para propiciar la igualdad de las mujeres y para erradicar el patriarcado.

Consideramos que los cambios que plantea la ALBA son alcanzables en tanto se amplíen y profundicen cambios como los que ya han emprendido algunos de nuestros países con un sentido de transformación estructural, que incluyen el reconocimiento de la diversidad económica y productiva y en ese marco la visibilización de las mujeres como actoras económicas, la equiparación entre el trabajo productivo y el reproductivo, el desarrollo de éticas de igualdad, diversidades y no violencia, el reconocimiento de la soberanía alimentaria, entre otros aspectos que podrían convertirse en punto común para todas las políticas públicas de la ALBA, colocando como eje el Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la sostenibilidad de la vida.

Con especial interés seguimos la propuesta de construir una Zona Económica de Desarrollo Compartido entre los países de la ALBA; consideramos que a su amparo y bajo un enfoque de economía diversa, social y solidaria, se pueden desarrollar iniciativas compartidas de soberanía alimentaria, de reconocimiento y desarrollo de los conocimientos de las mujeres,  de rescate y curaduría de las semillas nativas y de transgenosis natural, de producción y distribución cooperativa y asociativa, de generación de infraestructura y tecnologías orientadas al cuidado humano y ambiental.

La creación de núcleos de desarrollo endógeno binacionales o trinacionales, que transformen las condiciones de trabajo y empleo para las mujeres del campo y la ciudad, sería una importante experiencia de integración y preservación regional de la cultura productiva y solidaria acumulada históricamente por nuestros pueblos. De igual manera, la creación de un Instituto de Estudios Feministas de los países de la ALBA, que organice intercambios de conocimientos y saberes entre los países, desarrolle proyectos de investigación sobre políticas públicas e internacionales, recupere los múltiples aportes de las mujeres a lo largo de nuestra historia, y juegue un papel activo en la generación de propuestas y desarrollo de asesorías a los gobiernos en esta materia, contribuirá significativamente al fortalecimiento de nuestro proceso de cambio regional.

La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para el impulso de un proyecto de integración alternativo que no debe repetir el déficit democrático de las propuestas precedentes. La participación en la concepción, diseño y ejecución de proyectos debe ser una divisa, por ello proponemos, como forma inicial de materialización de esa participación, que en la  instancia técnica del Consejo Social encargada de elaborar estudios, preparar propuestas y formular proyectos relacionados con las políticas sociales de la ALBA, así como de coordinar y darles seguimiento, se contemple la participación paritaria de las mujeres, la misma que deberá hacerse extensiva a todas las instancias, incluidas aquellas de decisión, gestión y representación.

La ALBA tiene la particularidad de reunir a países de la Región Andina, Centroamérica y el Caribe, con problemáticas comunes y diferentes en materia de salud y vulnerabilidad frente a los fenómenos climáticos. Sería pertinente la creación de redes de intercambio y ayuda de las organizaciones de mujeres ante situaciones de emergencia epidemiológica y catástrofes naturales. Si bien el surgimiento y desarrollo de la ALBA ha sido un factor reconfortante en la senda de nuestras luchas, persisten en el mundo y en la región tendencias y procesos que constituyen zonas de riesgo y/o amenazas para los procesos de cambio, ante los cuales debemos permanecer alerta y desplegar toda la capacidad en defensa de nuestros procesos de transformación.  Declarar a los países de la ALBA como territorios de paz y libres de bases militares extrajeras es una propuesta de gran coherencia y defensa de la soberanía. Con preocupación vemos el avance en la región de un modelo de crecimiento focalizado en megaproyectos, que avanzan sin el consentimiento de los pueblos y atentan contra sus derechos, soberanía y autodeterminación.  El auge de monumentales obras de infraestructura bajo el amparo de proyectos como IIRSA y el Plan Mesoamérica, involucran a países de toda América Latina, incluso países de la ALBA. Tales obras son el sustento para la profundización y ampliación de economías de enclave, basadas en la racionalidad extractivista, deprededadora en su relación con la naturaleza y reproductora de las condiciones de relegamiento de nuestros pueblos. Estas obras tienen un notorio impacto sobre las mujeres, en especial las indígenas, comprometen la soberanía alimentaria de esas localidades y alteran la geografía, los ecosistemas y los patrones de consumo tradicional; algunas de ellas abren paso a la depredación de los recursos localizados en la Amazonía y en los bosques tropicales de Centroamérica. Creemos que es urgente que los gobiernos de la ALBA consideren colectivamente una crítica y distanciamiento de tales iniciativas del capitalismo neoliberal y asuman, sin ambigüedades, un nuevo enfoque de desarrollo congruente con la propuesta del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y con el proceso de cambios y estructurales que la ALBA conlleva. Con inquietud hemos visto, asimismo, el relanzamiento del Fondo Monetario Internacional en varios foros internacionales, como instancia reguladora frente a la actual crisis; resulta ofensivo hacia nuestros pueblos ignorar la responsabilidad de esa institución no sólo en las dinámicas que condujeron a la propia crisis, sino también en la aplicación de las políticas neoliberales que aún nos afectan duramente.  Ratificamos nuestra convicción, expresada en el último Foro Social Mundial (Belém 2009), de que el enfrentamiento a la crisis demanda alternativas anticapitalistas, antirracistas,  anti-imperialistas, socialistas, feministas y ecologistas. Es igualmente preocupante que se mantengan injustificadas expectativas en que la conclusión de la Ronda Doha de la OMC pueda resolver los problemas de acceso al mercado para los países ‘en desarrollo’. Los pueblos reclamamos el comercio justo y solidario frente al libre comercio; la apertura indiscriminada de nuestros mercados desplazó a las y los productores locales, la sustitución de importaciones fue demonizada para abrir nuestros mercados a los productos importados, la competencia se impuso a la lógica de la complementariedad y cooperación regional. La ALBA es un espacio invaluable para el rescate y el desarrollo de las producciones locales que fortalezcan las relaciones entre los pueblos y favorezcan formas de gestión colectiva, definida en torno al interés social y a los derechos de la naturaleza, por lo mismo debería extender la influencia de su filosofía a los acuerdos internacionales  con otras regiones. La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para la construcción de soberanía financiera. Recuperar el control sobre nuestros ahorros y recursos financieros y reorientar su utilización hacia nuestros objetivos estratégicos, con criterios de democratización y redistribución es fundamental. Resalta como mecanismo el Banco de la ALBA, que puede ser uno de los puntales para desarrollo de iniciativas económicas de carácter social y solidario de alcance regional, nacional y local, que se fundamenten en visiones de complementariedad entre los países y de justicia de género, integrando medidas eficaces para asegurar el acceso de las mujeres a los recursos y a la toma de decisiones. En igual sentido valoramos la importancia de la adopción del SUCRE como medio de intercambio soberano y eficaz en el comercio internacional entre nuestros países. Finalmente, es un desafío común para los países de la ALBA avanzar en políticas y medidas conjuntas para: Reconocer, dentro de las modalidades de trabajo, a las labores de autosustento y cuidado humano no remunerado que se realiza en los hogares. Los Estados deberían comprometerse a facilitar servicios e infraestructura para la atención pública y comunitaria de las necesidades básicas de todos los grupos dependientes (niñas/os, personas con discapacidad, adultas/os mayores), definir horarios de trabajo adecuados, impulsando la corresponsabilidad y reciprocidad de hombres y mujeres en el trabajo doméstico y en las obligaciones familiares, así como extender la seguridad social a quienes hacen esas labores. Impulsar reformas agrarias integrales y sostenibles, con una visión holística de la tierra como fuente de vida, que propicien la diversidad económica y productiva, la redistribución y la prohibición del latifundio. Impulsar la integración energética de América Latina y El Caribe bajo los principios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien, priorizando dentro de las estrategias de cooperación, proyectos de generación de energías limpias para fortalecer las capacidades de las pequeñas unidades productivas y las condiciones de vida de las poblaciones más empobrecidas. ALBA, un nuevo amanecer para nuestros pueblos con igualdad para las mujeres!

Red Latinoamericana Mujeres Transformando la Economía –REMTE- Articulación de Mujeres de la CLOC- Vía Campesina Federación de Mujeres Cubanas Federación Democrática Internacional de Mujeres FEDAEPS

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Dirigido a la Cumbre de la Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América –ALBA-

Cochabamba, click 16 y 17 de octubre 2009

La ALBA es coincidente en su propuesta con principios y reivindicaciones históricas planteadas por el movimiento de mujeres. Sus principios de solidaridad, for sale cooperación, reciprocidad, complementariedad, diversidad e igualdad, han sido la base de las prácticas y contribuciones económicas de las mujeres, ligadas prioritariamente a la reproducción integral de procesos y condiciones de vida, y son también el eje de nuestras visiones sobre un nuevo sistema económico. Así, la ALBA confluye con la aspiración de las mujeres latinoamericanas y caribeñas de levantar una sociedad integrada desde una perspectiva incluyente, que recoja y potencie la policroma diversidad de sus pueblos, superando injusticias y desigualdades.

Nosotras, que participamos activamente en las luchas y resistencias contra los proyectos de integración pautados por el capital, reconocemos a la ALBA como expresión de la búsqueda de un proyecto propio, en el cual los movimientos sociales y los pueblos, con nuestra participación activa, podamos contribuir y consensuar un proceso de construcción de sociedades alternativas.

Apreciamos el potencial de la ALBA para plantear un proyecto latinoamericano basado en transformaciones mayores: el socialismo del siglo XXI –que, como lo han asumido ya algunos presidentes, ‘solo podrá ser feminista’-; el paradigma del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la riqueza de la plurinacionalidad, que redefinen ya los estados de algunos de sus países miembros.

Valoramos el hecho de que, en su corta vida, la ALBA registra ya logros en el terreno del intercambio solidario, en los dominios de educación, salud,  cooperación energética; es notable su proyección como espacio de concertación política y resolución de conflictos, de construcción de posiciones comunes, “en defensa de la independencia, la soberanía, la autodeterminación y la identidad de los países que la integran y de los intereses y las aspiraciones de los pueblos del Sur frente a los intentos de dominación política y económica”.

Como parte de los movimientos sociales y como protagonistas históricas de experiencias no mercantilizadas, hemos planteado, al igual que la ALBA, que nuestras sociedades se construyan sobre la base de la “unión de los pueblos, la autodeterminación, la complementariedad económica, el comercio justo, la lucha contra la pobreza, la preservación de la identidad cultural, la integración energética, la defensa del ambiente y la justicia”; desde esta coincidencia de perspectivas nos proponemos mancomunar esfuerzos para lograr los objetivos comunes de construcción de una Latinoamérica autodeterminada, solidaria, libre de relaciones patriarcales y levantada bajo los designios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien.

La consolidación de la ALBA como un espacio de soberanía política, económica, social, institucional, cultural, de la diversidad, de lo popular y de lo público demanda cambios de fondo en la manera de pensar, diseñar, decidir y materializar las políticas. Se trata de construir un nuevo paradigma societal, que va más allá de rediseñar el existente. Este es un reto que requiere aunar toda la inteligencia, comprensión y capacidad de diálogo entre los gobiernos de los países de la ALBA y los movimientos sociales, de manera fluida y permanente.

La creación del Consejo Ministerial de Mujeres y del Consejo de Movimientos Sociales, es paso importante para la articulación efectiva entre los gobiernos y los pueblos.  Saludamos esta decisión, a la vez que ofrecemos nuestro concurso para contribuir con el desarrollo de una perspectiva feminista en el conjunto de iniciativas y de políticas de la ALBA, como también para visualizar las medidas específicas que deberían tomarse para propiciar la igualdad de las mujeres y para erradicar el patriarcado.

Consideramos que los cambios que plantea la ALBA son alcanzables en tanto se amplíen y profundicen cambios como los que ya han emprendido algunos de nuestros países con un sentido de transformación estructural, que incluyen el reconocimiento de la diversidad económica y productiva y en ese marco la visibilización de las mujeres como actoras económicas, la equiparación entre el trabajo productivo y el reproductivo, el desarrollo de éticas de igualdad, diversidades y no violencia, el reconocimiento de la soberanía alimentaria, entre otros aspectos que podrían convertirse en punto común para todas las políticas públicas de la ALBA, colocando como eje el Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la sostenibilidad de la vida.

Con especial interés seguimos la propuesta de construir una Zona Económica de Desarrollo Compartido entre los países de la ALBA; consideramos que a su amparo y bajo un enfoque de economía diversa, social y solidaria, se pueden desarrollar iniciativas compartidas de soberanía alimentaria, de reconocimiento y desarrollo de los conocimientos de las mujeres,  de rescate y curaduría de las semillas nativas y de transgenosis natural, de producción y distribución cooperativa y asociativa, de generación de infraestructura y tecnologías orientadas al cuidado humano y ambiental.

La creación de núcleos de desarrollo endógeno binacionales o trinacionales, que transformen las condiciones de trabajo y empleo para las mujeres del campo y la ciudad, sería una importante experiencia de integración y preservación regional de la cultura productiva y solidaria acumulada históricamente por nuestros pueblos.
De igual manera, la creación de un Instituto de Estudios Feministas de los países de la ALBA, que organice intercambios de conocimientos y saberes entre los países, desarrolle proyectos de investigación sobre políticas públicas e internacionales, recupere los múltiples aportes de las mujeres a lo largo de nuestra historia, y juegue un papel activo en la generación de propuestas y desarrollo de asesorías a los gobiernos en esta materia, contribuirá significativamente al fortalecimiento de nuestro proceso de cambio regional.

La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para el impulso de un proyecto de integración alternativo que no debe repetir el déficit democrático de las propuestas precedentes. La participación en la concepción, diseño y ejecución de proyectos debe ser una divisa, por ello proponemos, como forma inicial de materialización de esa participación, que en la  instancia técnica del Consejo Social encargada de elaborar estudios, preparar propuestas y formular proyectos relacionados con las políticas sociales de la ALBA, así como de coordinar y darles seguimiento, se contemple la participación paritaria de las mujeres, la misma que deberá hacerse extensiva a todas las instancias, incluidas aquellas de decisión, gestión y representación.

La ALBA tiene la particularidad de reunir a países de la Región Andina, Centroamérica y el Caribe, con problemáticas comunes y diferentes en materia de salud y vulnerabilidad frente a los fenómenos climáticos. Sería pertinente la creación de redes de intercambio y ayuda de las organizaciones de mujeres ante situaciones de emergencia epidemiológica y catástrofes naturales.

Si bien el surgimiento y desarrollo de la ALBA ha sido un factor reconfortante en la senda de nuestras luchas, persisten en el mundo y en la región tendencias y procesos que constituyen zonas de riesgo y/o amenazas para los procesos de cambio, ante los cuales debemos permanecer alerta y desplegar toda la capacidad en defensa de nuestros procesos de transformación.  Declarar a los países de la ALBA como territorios de paz y libres de bases militares extrajeras es una propuesta de gran coherencia y defensa de la soberanía.

Con preocupación vemos el avance en la región de un modelo de crecimiento focalizado en megaproyectos, que avanzan sin el consentimiento de los pueblos y atentan contra sus derechos, soberanía y autodeterminación.  El auge de monumentales obras de infraestructura bajo el amparo de proyectos como IIRSA y el Plan Mesoamérica, involucran a países de toda América Latina, incluso países de la ALBA. Tales obras son el sustento para la profundización y ampliación de economías de enclave, basadas en la racionalidad extractivista, deprededadora en su relación con la naturaleza y reproductora de las condiciones de relegamiento de nuestros pueblos. Estas obras tienen un notorio impacto sobre las mujeres, en especial las indígenas, comprometen la soberanía alimentaria de esas localidades y alteran la geografía, los ecosistemas y los patrones de consumo tradicional; algunas de ellas abren paso a la depredación de los recursos localizados en la Amazonía y en los bosques tropicales de Centroamérica.

Creemos que es urgente que los gobiernos de la ALBA consideren colectivamente una crítica y distanciamiento de tales iniciativas del capitalismo neoliberal y asuman, sin ambigüedades, un nuevo enfoque de desarrollo congruente con la propuesta del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y con el proceso de cambios y estructurales que la ALBA conlleva.
Con inquietud hemos visto, asimismo, el relanzamiento del Fondo Monetario Internacional en varios foros internacionales, como instancia reguladora frente a la actual crisis; resulta ofensivo hacia nuestros pueblos ignorar la responsabilidad de esa institución no sólo en las dinámicas que condujeron a la propia crisis, sino también en la aplicación de las políticas neoliberales que aún nos afectan duramente.  Ratificamos nuestra convicción, expresada en el último Foro Social Mundial (Belém 2009), de que el enfrentamiento a la crisis demanda alternativas anticapitalistas, antirracistas,  anti-imperialistas, socialistas, feministas y ecologistas.

Es igualmente preocupante que se mantengan injustificadas expectativas en que la conclusión de la Ronda Doha de la OMC pueda resolver los problemas de acceso al mercado para los países ‘en desarrollo’. Los pueblos reclamamos el comercio justo y solidario frente al libre comercio; la apertura indiscriminada de nuestros mercados desplazó a las y los productores locales, la sustitución de importaciones fue demonizada para abrir nuestros mercados a los productos importados, la competencia se impuso a la lógica de la complementariedad y cooperación regional.

La ALBA es un espacio invaluable para el rescate y el desarrollo de las producciones locales que fortalezcan las relaciones entre los pueblos y favorezcan formas de gestión colectiva, definida en torno al interés social y a los derechos de la naturaleza, por lo mismo debería extender la influencia de su filosofía a los acuerdos internacionales  con otras regiones.

La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para la construcción de soberanía financiera. Recuperar el control sobre nuestros ahorros y recursos financieros y reorientar su utilización hacia nuestros objetivos estratégicos, con criterios de democratización y redistribución es fundamental. Resalta como mecanismo el Banco de la ALBA, que puede ser uno de los puntales para desarrollo de iniciativas económicas de carácter social y solidario de alcance regional, nacional y local, que se fundamenten en visiones de complementariedad entre los países y de justicia de género, integrando medidas eficaces para asegurar el acceso de las mujeres a los recursos y a la toma de decisiones. En igual sentido valoramos la importancia de la adopción del SUCRE como medio de intercambio soberano y eficaz en el comercio internacional entre nuestros países.

Finalmente, es un desafío común para los países de la ALBA avanzar en políticas y medidas conjuntas para:

Reconocer, dentro de las modalidades de trabajo, a las labores de autosustento y cuidado humano no remunerado que se realiza en los hogares. Los Estados deberían comprometerse a facilitar servicios e infraestructura para la atención pública y comunitaria de las necesidades básicas de todos los grupos dependientes (niñas/os, personas con discapacidad, adultas/os mayores), definir horarios de trabajo adecuados, impulsando la corresponsabilidad y reciprocidad de hombres y mujeres en el trabajo doméstico y en las obligaciones familiares, así como extender la seguridad social a quienes hacen esas labores.

Impulsar reformas agrarias integrales y sostenibles, con una visión holística de la tierra como fuente de vida, que propicien la diversidad económica y productiva, la redistribución y la prohibición del latifundio.

Impulsar la integración energética de América Latina y El Caribe bajo los principios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien, priorizando dentro de las estrategias de cooperación, proyectos de generación de energías limpias para fortalecer las capacidades de las pequeñas unidades productivas y las condiciones de vida de las poblaciones más empobrecidas.

ALBA, un nuevo amanecer para nuestros pueblos
con igualdad para las mujeres!

Red Latinoamericana Mujeres Transformando la Economía –REMTE-
Articulación de Mujeres de la CLOC- Vía Campesina
Federación de Mujeres Cubanas
Federación Democrática Internacional de Mujeres
FEDAEPS

Dirigido a la Cumbre de la Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América –ALBA-

Cochabamba, 16 y 17 de octubre 2009

La ALBA es coincidente en su propuesta con principios y reivindicaciones históricas planteadas por el movimiento de mujeres. Sus principios de solidaridad, ask cooperación, reciprocidad, complementariedad, diversidad e igualdad, han sido la base de las prácticas y contribuciones económicas de las mujeres, ligadas prioritariamente a la reproducción integral de procesos y condiciones de vida, y son también el eje de nuestras visiones sobre un nuevo sistema económico. Así, la ALBA confluye con la aspiración de las mujeres latinoamericanas y caribeñas de levantar una sociedad integrada desde una perspectiva incluyente, que recoja y potencie la policroma diversidad de sus pueblos, superando injusticias y desigualdades. Nosotras, que participamos activamente en las luchas y resistencias contra los proyectos de integración pautados por el capital, reconocemos a la ALBA como expresión de la búsqueda de un proyecto propio, en el cual los movimientos sociales y los pueblos, con nuestra participación activa, podamos contribuir y consensuar un proceso de construcción de sociedades alternativas. Apreciamos el potencial de la ALBA para plantear un proyecto latinoamericano basado en transformaciones mayores: el socialismo del siglo XXI –que, como lo han asumido ya algunos presidentes, ‘solo podrá ser feminista’-; el paradigma del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la riqueza de la plurinacionalidad, que redefinen ya los estados de algunos de sus países miembros. Valoramos el hecho de que, en su corta vida, la ALBA registra ya logros en el terreno del intercambio solidario, en los dominios de educación, salud,  cooperación energética; es notable su proyección como espacio de concertación política y resolución de conflictos, de construcción de posiciones comunes, “en defensa de la independencia, la soberanía, la autodeterminación y la identidad de los países que la integran y de los intereses y las aspiraciones de los pueblos del Sur frente a los intentos de dominación política y económica”. Como parte de los movimientos sociales y como protagonistas históricas de experiencias no mercantilizadas, hemos planteado, al igual que la ALBA, que nuestras sociedades se construyan sobre la base de la “unión de los pueblos, la autodeterminación, la complementariedad económica, el comercio justo, la lucha contra la pobreza, la preservación de la identidad cultural, la integración energética, la defensa del ambiente y la justicia”; desde esta coincidencia de perspectivas nos proponemos mancomunar esfuerzos para lograr los objetivos comunes de construcción de una Latinoamérica autodeterminada, solidaria, libre de relaciones patriarcales y levantada bajo los designios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien. La consolidación de la ALBA como un espacio de soberanía política, económica, social, institucional, cultural, de la diversidad, de lo popular y de lo público demanda cambios de fondo en la manera de pensar, diseñar, decidir y materializar las políticas. Se trata de construir un nuevo paradigma societal, que va más allá de rediseñar el existente. Este es un reto que requiere aunar toda la inteligencia, comprensión y capacidad de diálogo entre los gobiernos de los países de la ALBA y los movimientos sociales, de manera fluida y permanente. La creación del Consejo Ministerial de Mujeres y del Consejo de Movimientos Sociales, es paso importante para la articulación efectiva entre los gobiernos y los pueblos.  Saludamos esta decisión, a la vez que ofrecemos nuestro concurso para contribuir con el desarrollo de una perspectiva feminista en el conjunto de iniciativas y de políticas de la ALBA, como también para visualizar las medidas específicas que deberían tomarse para propiciar la igualdad de las mujeres y para erradicar el patriarcado. Consideramos que los cambios que plantea la ALBA son alcanzables en tanto se amplíen y profundicen cambios como los que ya han emprendido algunos de nuestros países con un sentido de transformación estructural, que incluyen el reconocimiento de la diversidad económica y productiva y en ese marco la visibilización de las mujeres como actoras económicas, la equiparación entre el trabajo productivo y el reproductivo, el desarrollo de éticas de igualdad, diversidades y no violencia, el reconocimiento de la soberanía alimentaria, entre otros aspectos que podrían convertirse en punto común para todas las políticas públicas de la ALBA, colocando como eje el Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y la sostenibilidad de la vida. Con especial interés seguimos la propuesta de construir una Zona Económica de Desarrollo Compartido entre los países de la ALBA; consideramos que a su amparo y bajo un enfoque de economía diversa, social y solidaria, se pueden desarrollar iniciativas compartidas de soberanía alimentaria, de reconocimiento y desarrollo de los conocimientos de las mujeres,  de rescate y curaduría de las semillas nativas y de transgenosis natural, de producción y distribución cooperativa y asociativa, de generación de infraestructura y tecnologías orientadas al cuidado humano y ambiental. La creación de núcleos de desarrollo endógeno binacionales o trinacionales, que transformen las condiciones de trabajo y empleo para las mujeres del campo y la ciudad, sería una importante experiencia de integración y preservación regional de la cultura productiva y solidaria acumulada históricamente por nuestros pueblos. De igual manera, la creación de un Instituto de Estudios Feministas de los países de la ALBA, que organice intercambios de conocimientos y saberes entre los países, desarrolle proyectos de investigación sobre políticas públicas e internacionales, recupere los múltiples aportes de las mujeres a lo largo de nuestra historia, y juegue un papel activo en la generación de propuestas y desarrollo de asesorías a los gobiernos en esta materia, contribuirá significativamente al fortalecimiento de nuestro proceso de cambio regional. La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para el impulso de un proyecto de integración alternativo que no debe repetir el déficit democrático de las propuestas precedentes. La participación en la concepción, diseño y ejecución de proyectos debe ser una divisa, por ello proponemos, como forma inicial de materialización de esa participación, que en la  instancia técnica del Consejo Social encargada de elaborar estudios, preparar propuestas y formular proyectos relacionados con las políticas sociales de la ALBA, así como de coordinar y darles seguimiento, se contemple la participación paritaria de las mujeres, la misma que deberá hacerse extensiva a todas las instancias, incluidas aquellas de decisión, gestión y representación. La ALBA tiene la particularidad de reunir a países de la Región Andina, Centroamérica y el Caribe, con problemáticas comunes y diferentes en materia de salud y vulnerabilidad frente a los fenómenos climáticos. Sería pertinente la creación de redes de intercambio y ayuda de las organizaciones de mujeres ante situaciones de emergencia epidemiológica y catástrofes naturales. Si bien el surgimiento y desarrollo de la ALBA ha sido un factor reconfortante en la senda de nuestras luchas, persisten en el mundo y en la región tendencias y procesos que constituyen zonas de riesgo y/o amenazas para los procesos de cambio, ante los cuales debemos permanecer alerta y desplegar toda la capacidad en defensa de nuestros procesos de transformación.  Declarar a los países de la ALBA como territorios de paz y libres de bases militares extrajeras es una propuesta de gran coherencia y defensa de la soberanía. Con preocupación vemos el avance en la región de un modelo de crecimiento focalizado en megaproyectos, que avanzan sin el consentimiento de los pueblos y atentan contra sus derechos, soberanía y autodeterminación.  El auge de monumentales obras de infraestructura bajo el amparo de proyectos como IIRSA y el Plan Mesoamérica, involucran a países de toda América Latina, incluso países de la ALBA. Tales obras son el sustento para la profundización y ampliación de economías de enc
lave, basadas en la racionalidad extractivista, deprededadora en su relación con la naturaleza y reproductora de las condiciones de relegamiento de nuestros pueblos. Estas obras tienen un notorio impacto sobre las mujeres, en especial las indígenas, comprometen la soberanía alimentaria de esas localidades y alteran la geografía, los ecosistemas y los patrones de consumo tradicional; algunas de ellas abren paso a la depredación de los recursos localizados en la Amazonía y en los bosques tropicales de Centroamérica. Creemos que es urgente que los gobiernos de la ALBA consideren colectivamente una crítica y distanciamiento de tales iniciativas del capitalismo neoliberal y asuman, sin ambigüedades, un nuevo enfoque de desarrollo congruente con la propuesta del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien y con el proceso de cambios y estructurales que la ALBA conlleva. Con inquietud hemos visto, asimismo, el relanzamiento del Fondo Monetario Internacional en varios foros internacionales, como instancia reguladora frente a la actual crisis; resulta ofensivo hacia nuestros pueblos ignorar la responsabilidad de esa institución no sólo en las dinámicas que condujeron a la propia crisis, sino también en la aplicación de las políticas neoliberales que aún nos afectan duramente.  Ratificamos nuestra convicción, expresada en el último Foro Social Mundial (Belém 2009), de que el enfrentamiento a la crisis demanda alternativas anticapitalistas, antirracistas,  anti-imperialistas, socialistas, feministas y ecologistas. Es igualmente preocupante que se mantengan injustificadas expectativas en que la conclusión de la Ronda Doha de la OMC pueda resolver los problemas de acceso al mercado para los países ‘en desarrollo’. Los pueblos reclamamos el comercio justo y solidario frente al libre comercio; la apertura indiscriminada de nuestros mercados desplazó a las y los productores locales, la sustitución de importaciones fue demonizada para abrir nuestros mercados a los productos importados, la competencia se impuso a la lógica de la complementariedad y cooperación regional. La ALBA es un espacio invaluable para el rescate y el desarrollo de las producciones locales que fortalezcan las relaciones entre los pueblos y favorezcan formas de gestión colectiva, definida en torno al interés social y a los derechos de la naturaleza, por lo mismo debería extender la influencia de su filosofía a los acuerdos internacionales  con otras regiones. La ALBA es un espacio privilegiado para la construcción de soberanía financiera. Recuperar el control sobre nuestros ahorros y recursos financieros y reorientar su utilización hacia nuestros objetivos estratégicos, con criterios de democratización y redistribución es fundamental. Resalta como mecanismo el Banco de la ALBA, que puede ser uno de los puntales para desarrollo de iniciativas económicas de carácter social y solidario de alcance regional, nacional y local, que se fundamenten en visiones de complementariedad entre los países y de justicia de género, integrando medidas eficaces para asegurar el acceso de las mujeres a los recursos y a la toma de decisiones. En igual sentido valoramos la importancia de la adopción del SUCRE como medio de intercambio soberano y eficaz en el comercio internacional entre nuestros países. Finalmente, es un desafío común para los países de la ALBA avanzar en políticas y medidas conjuntas para: Reconocer, dentro de las modalidades de trabajo, a las labores de autosustento y cuidado humano no remunerado que se realiza en los hogares. Los Estados deberían comprometerse a facilitar servicios e infraestructura para la atención pública y comunitaria de las necesidades básicas de todos los grupos dependientes (niñas/os, personas con discapacidad, adultas/os mayores), definir horarios de trabajo adecuados, impulsando la corresponsabilidad y reciprocidad de hombres y mujeres en el trabajo doméstico y en las obligaciones familiares, así como extender la seguridad social a quienes hacen esas labores. Impulsar reformas agrarias integrales y sostenibles, con una visión holística de la tierra como fuente de vida, que propicien la diversidad económica y productiva, la redistribución y la prohibición del latifundio. Impulsar la integración energética de América Latina y El Caribe bajo los principios del Buen Vivir / Vivir Bien, priorizando dentro de las estrategias de cooperación, proyectos de generación de energías limpias para fortalecer las capacidades de las pequeñas unidades productivas y las condiciones de vida de las poblaciones más empobrecidas. ALBA, un nuevo amanecer para nuestros pueblos con igualdad para las mujeres!

Red Latinoamericana Mujeres Transformando la Economía –REMTE- Articulación de Mujeres de la CLOC- Vía Campesina Federación de Mujeres Cubanas Federación Democrática Internacional de Mujeres FEDAEPS

Today, troche the European Union stands at a crossroads.

One of the EU’s overarching objectives is to generate economic prosperity. This has been pursuedby promoting productivity and consumption,

But economic growth and competitiveness became objectives in themselves, rather than means toan end. Social and environmental policies proved too weak to achieve their goals. On top of social and ecological challenges, the EU today faces an unprecedented economic downturn. The lesson from these events is clear: we need a major re-thinking of Europe’s strategic direction.

This year will bring a new Commission and newly-elected Parliament, and in 2010 we will seethe adoption of a new political guidance for the EU by its Heads of State. The time to influence the strategic direction of the EU is now.

We have a unique opportunity to ensure that the EU putsthe economy at the service of people and planet – instead of the other way round.The Spring Alliance has been formed to do exactly this. It is a joint campaign initiated by four leading European civil society organisations: the European Environmental Bureau, the EuropeanTrade Union Confederation, Social Platform and Concord.

The Spring Alliance Manifesto is also supported by organisations from all corners of civil society and beyond, including fair-tradeassociations, anti-poverty and health campaigners, consumer organisations and representatives from the research community.

This Manifesto outlines 17 proposals for an EU that puts people and the planet first. We explainwhy these recommendations should be taken, and list concrete steps that illustrate how decisionmakers can turn our proposals into reality.


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Euromemorandum Group: Democratic transformation of European finance, a full employment regime, and ecological restructoring – Alternatives to finance-driven capitalism

Aug 16 2009
Jason Tockman

The first time Mario Terán faced a doctor from Cuba, he killed him. He heard Che Guevara utter his famous last words: “Shoot, coward; you are only going to kill a man,” and in October of 1967, in a small schoolhouse in rural Bolivia, Sergeant Terán fired a round of bullets into the revolutionary’s body.

Forty years later, Terán walked into a medical clinic staffed by Cuban physicians. Disguising his identity, he requested medical attention. His cataracts were corrected, his sight restored.

Like hundreds of thousands of other Bolivians, Che’s killer is a beneficiary of Operación Milagro (Operation Miracle), the cornerstone of Cuba’s programs of social solidarity in the country. In addition to almost 2,000 Cuban medical personnel in Bolivia, aid from Cuba and Venezuela has funded the opening or expansion of at least 20 hospitals and 11 eye clinics across the country.

The support falls under the rubric of what President Evo Morales calls the “Peoples’ Trade Agreement” (TCP)-also known as the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) or TCP-ALBA-a regional integration accord signed in April 2006 that seeks to depart from the free trade model. Based upon principles of solidarity, cooperation and complementarity, the agreement recognizes asymmetries between countries and provides the greatest advantages to those with the smallest economies-in this case Bolivia.

What Cuba has, and is uniquely able to deliver under the framework of the TCP-ALBA, is a massive surplus of skilled physicians that the socialist country has been sending abroad since its first medical mission to Algeria in 1963.

Much as they do at sites across Bolivia, Cuban doctors work side-by-side with Bolivian physicians at the San Francisco de Asis Hospital in the rural town of Villa Tunari, nestled in the tropical El Chapare region. A Bolivian administrator explains that the hospital staff is comprised of 68 Cubans integrated with the 72 Bolivians who work there. Of the three surgeons, two are Cuban. The government of Cuba covers all of the expenses of their doctors, and they do not charge for services. One of the Cubans on site proudly asserts that in the span of one year his team had seen more than 30,000 patients, and conducted 400 surgeries.

At a national level, Bolivia’s TCP-ALBA Coordination Team documented that in 2007 Cuban medical personnel had provided services to around three million Bolivians. The following year, a BBC article reported the number of consultations had surged to nine million. Government figures from 2009 indicate that more than 260,000 Bolivians had undergone eye surgeries through Operación Milagro.

But not everyone in Bolivia is thrilled about the Cubans’ presence. Foremost among the critics is the profession’s trade association, the Bolivian Medical College, which claims that the Cuban physicians are unqualified and ignorant of Bolivian customs related to matters of health. Moreover, the College argues that the influx of foreign doctors deprives Bolivians of work.

The proposition of substituting Bolivian for Cuban doctors has resonated with many in the medical community. In an outlying neighborhood of El Alto, a Bolivian doctor, speaking anonymously, expressed that, while he does not oppose the Cuban teams, he shares the sentiment of the Medical College: “This money should go to Bolivian doctors, not to Cubans, we say. There are unemployed Bolivian doctors. They should give the work to them, not to foreigners.”

Many doctors contest the profession’s official narrative, including Cochabamba physician Godofredo Reinicke, once El Chapare’s Human Rights Ombudsman, and now director of the human rights group Puente Investigación y Enlace. Reinicke explains: “The Medical College has rejected the Cubans’ presence because… it lacks the solidarity that it once had with the people; the doctor has become some sort of mercantilist. For me, the presence of [Cuban] doctors in particular is aid of utmost importance. [They are] advancing the theme of solidarity for doctors and common citizens to see how people can work without the necessity of pressure, conditionality or money.”

Nationality aside, few would contest that the Bolivian health care system suffers from insufficient facilities and personnel. According to a 2004 World Bank report, the number of Bolivian medical practitioners per capita was half of the Latin American average, with only 6.6 doctors and 3.4 nurses for every 10,000 people. The Bank estimated that an additional 8,850 health professional and many more health facilities were needed in Bolivia.

“Seventy-seven percent of the population is excluded from health services in some manner,” explained Bolivia’s former Health Minister Dr. Nila Heredia in her 2006 presentation before the World Health Organization. “This reproduces in the field of health those inequalities and injustices of the economic structure.”

Under Bolivia’s system, the country’s elite nets five times more in health care expenditures than those with the lowest incomes. Social security and private health care, which together represent four-fifths of all health care expenditures, are highly regressive. The World Bank found that only around 4% goes to poorest 20% of the population, while almost half is enjoyed by the richest quintile. Rural residents are especially disadvantaged, with many effectively lacking any access to health care services.

While medical solidarity from Cuba, Venezuela and other donor countries has been helpful in confronting Bolivia’s uneven health care landscape, it is not a permanent fix. In the end, Bolivians should be seeing Bolivian doctors, a point implicitly acknowledged by the several thousand scholarships provided to Bolivians to study medicine in Cuba and Venezuela.

The Morales government has also initiated a series of domestic programs to increase health services. A newly announced mother-child subsidy called “Juana Azurduy” provides cash payments to pregnant women and mothers with babies through their second year, so long as they maintain pre- and post-natal checkups. Nutritional and vaccination campaigns have been initiated and expanded to combat malnutrition and diseases such as yellow fever and rubéola (measles). And in an effort to transcend the dominance of the “biomedical” model, the newly approved Constitution (January 2009) guarantees and promotes the use of indigenous medicines and “ancestral knowledge and practices.”

Although these reforms signify important advances, there remain significant structural, budgetary and ideological challenges fundamental to the design of Bolivia’s health care system. Debates over privatized care, unequal access, lack of funds, and the prioritization of biomedical disease treatment over the promotion of health and traditional medicines are by no means unique to Bolivia. Yet they sit uncomfortably at odds with the new Constitution’s promise of “universal, free, equitable, intracultural” access to health care for all Bolivians.

Lifting Bolivia from close to the bottom of the hemisphere’s health indicators will be a difficult task for Morales, much as it was for his predecessors. The initiatives he has implemented to date provide, at best, partial answers. But while Bolivia awaits more durable solutions, the government’s immediate approaches have won accolades from many Bolivians, with the importation of Cuban medical professionals being a particularly popular measure.

“The Cubans are well received by those who have visited them and been attended as patients,” the mayor of a town in El Chapare told me. “I welcome them because they are the support the population needs.”


Source: https://nacla.org/node/6070

From participants in the conference “Regional Integration: A new opportunity to face the crisis”, buy Asunción, Paraguay, July 21-22, 2009

We, representatives of social movements, labour and civil society organisations from Latin America, Africa, Asia and Europe, who are meeting in Asunción to discuss the vital importance of regional responses to the current global crisis, call upon the heads of state meeting in Asunción for the Mercosur Summit to decisively agree and implement new modalities for developmental cooperation that serves the needs of the peoples of the regions.

Such new modalities must, in the first instance, fundamentally revise the unjust terms of the Itaipu energy agreement signed decades ago between the dictatorship governments of Brazil and Paraguay. Energy is Paraguay’s chief resource which can be used to develop a sustainable economy and thereby improve the lives of its people. The social movements and Government of Paraguay have demanded the sovereign right of the country to 50 percent of the energy from the Itaipu and Yacyreta projects, and revision of the debt from the building of the dam. We see these as fair and just demands.

On the basis of this highly significant case and in order to ensure that such projects, based on imbalanced power relations between neighbouring countries, are not in future replicated anywhere in our respective regions, we strongly urge that region-wide frameworks of equity principles regulating such joint projects and programs must be created through collective negotiations involving all the regional governments . These, in turn, must include active engagements and inputs from organised social and labour forces from throughout the respective regions.

It was in this spirit of cooperation that the conference included the participation of parliamentarians from various countries in these regions, and direct dialogue with government spokespersons. Some of the critical issues that were discussed were:
* The urgent necessity for governments to create regional financial policy instruments such as regional development banks to defend their economies and peoples against the destructive effects of neo-liberal globalized capitalism.
* The recognition that regional integration must be based on solidarity principles and programs of complementarity based on appropriate accommodation to the different sizes, resources and levels of development of participating countries in order to transform the development models towards balanced and equitable production systems between all the countries, localities and peoples.
* In this context, the strategic importance of taking active stands to reverse the coup-de-etat in Honduras and the displacement of a legally elected government by anti-democratic forces which is aimed not only against the Zelaya government but at reversing the progressive trends in the region in order to maintain the capital accumulation system, favouring the interests of transnational corporations from the US and Europe.
* The imperative urgency of creating modalities and means of effective participation by social and labour movements and communities to evolve strategies of regional cooperation from a holistic and sustainable perspective and with true sovereignty of the peoples.

We see this moment as an historical conjuncture for the world when the crisis has exposed the fundamentally unstable functioning and dangerous effects of the global capitalist system. It is also an opportunity to challenge the currently dominant global economic and political regime, and devise people-centered and ecologically sound alternatives. We are confident that the Latin American people and governments will play a significant role in the formulation and evolution of such alternatives together with all the regions and peoples of the world in the interests of our shared planetary home and common future.

Asuncion del Paraguay, 22 July 2009

EuroMemorandum 2008/09


In the second half of 2008 the EU has faced the biggest financial crisis since the end of world war 2, try and at the same time is confronted with the prospect of a serious recession. EU institutions and gov-ernments have been highly active, organising one summit after the other to prevent a breakdown of thefinancial system. But it is questionable whether the huge programmes to bail out and recapitalise thebanks will really help even in the short term, and it is certain that the solutions presented are not sus-tainable in the long run. Meanwhile the growing problems of unemployment, poverty and precarious employment, rising inequality, energy provision, and climate change have been largely crowded out by the desperate attempts to prevent a financial break-down.


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Assembly of Social Movements – 2009: To Change Europe


Monday 1 June 2009

  1. The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) is holding its Policy Organs meetings and the 13th Summit of Heads of State and Government in the resort town of Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe from the 28th May to 8th June 2009 under the theme Consolidating Regional Economic Integration through Value Addition, salve Trade and Food Security.2.
  2. From the 2nd – 4th June 2009 the Council of Ministers will be meeting to deliberate on a number of issues affecting the COMESA region, cure including the current negotiations with the European Union (officially known as the European Community) on concluding Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs).

We recall that:

3.         The Eastern and Southern Africa Group (ESA) and the European Community (EC) senior officials met in Brussels on 28 April 2009 under the co-chairmanship of H.E Ambassadors S Gunessee and N. Wahab on ESA side as well as P. Thompson, Director, DG Trade on EC side. In their conclusions on the Interim EPAs initialled towards the end of 2007, the officials noted that:

On signature of interim EPA, EC confirmed that provided that an agreement is reached on translation, the interim Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) could be ready for signature around mid-May 2009. ESA confirmed its decision to host the signature in Mauritius and informed that the issue of the date of signature will be considered at the next ESA Council scheduled for the 4th June 2009 in Victoria Falls back to back with COMESA Summit with a view to agreeing on a mutually convenient date as well as its arrangement for the signing ceremony.

We are concerned that:

4.         The ESA countries (as represented by their officials) have confirmed their decision to host the signature of the interim EPAs and that they are already considering discussing the dates of such a ceremony when the outstanding and contentious issues in the interim EPAs have not been addressed and resolved.

5.         The contentious issues arising from the interim EPAs include, inter alia, involve far reaching commitments on tariffs reductions the freezing of export taxes that ESA countries have been using, the requirement that ESA countries should not increase duties on products from the EU beyond what they have been applying (standstill clause), liberalising “substantially all trade”, bilateral safeguards (for infant industry protection)-all these issues are still under negotiations. We take the precautionary principle and reiterate that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed.

6.         The EC has insisted that the first priority should be the signature of the interim EPA. The EU main interest is in market access which they may achieve in interim EPAs. This limits the scope of focussing on the real issues of interest to ESA countries that need attention before the signature. ESA countries should resist the pressure of rushing to sign the interim EPA when it is clear they will be mortgaging national and public assets to the EC.

We urge ESA countries to recognise that:

7.         Africa remains a marginal player in world trade (6% in 1980 and 3% in 2008) since the continent’s trade structure still lacks diversity in terms of production and exports. As such, negotiations to further liberalise (after Structural Adjustment Programmes) their economies will be a futile and possible suicidal exercise until certain pre-requisites are met and instituted within their economies. The emphasis on trade liberalisation alone as a means to stimulating growth and development is misplaced.

8.         The pre-requisites (as informed by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development) centre on addressing the structural constraints in ESA countries including

  • increased public investment in research and development, rural infrastructure — including roads — and health and education
  • overhauling the basic productive infrastructure to make production more reliable. Power generation, water supply and telecommunications are three key areas that need special attention. In addition, building a competitive manufacturing sector will require the strengthening of the support infrastructure needed for exporting, including roads, railways and port facilities.
  • encouraging cross-border trade infrastructure. It is unlikely that the manufacturing sector in Africa will grow to a competitive level if it is limited to small domestic markets. The smallness of individual African markets and the difficulty for most firms to access the markets of industrialized countries suggest that in the short and medium term, the expansion of intra-African trade could offer the opportunity to widen markets outside national boundaries. In so doing, some key infrastructure projects could be executed at the regional level, taking into account regional economic complementarities.
  • development of domestic policy regulatory frameworks to regulate the movement of goods and services in and outside ESA countries. This includes adopting policies that ensure Special and Differential Treatment including the Special Safeguard Mechanism in agriculture, use of tariffs, among other things

9.         Trade liberalisation has so far discouraged intra-regional trade in Africa as the reduction of tariffs, which reduce the preference margins given to other African countries, reduce the incentives for intraregional trade.

10.       The Cotonou Agreement (that forms the legal basis of negotiating EPAs), recognise that reciprocal agreements (EPAs) with the EC had to foster regional integration and to be based on current integration efforts. However, as the interim agreements have shown, this commitment has been negated as the current configuration of the EPA encompasses a major risk of undermining ongoing regional integration processes.

11.       Most countries in the region continue to suffer from food shortages and food insecurity. As a result they have been importing more food and energy (including inflation which was at 10.7% in 2008 up from 6.4% in 2007, the continental average excluding Zimbabwe) into the region. Trade liberalisation will exacerbate the problems of food insecurity.

12.       The ESA political leadership have an obligation towards their people and should ensure that whatever decisions they take should not put the lives of people in danger. This means all those targets of reducing poverty, reducing child and maternal mortality and increasing access to education for the people should be used as tools for making informed decisions especially with regards to trade negotiations.

13.       Given the above, liberalising ESA economies under the EPAs as already indicated by the interim EPAs will further weaken the countries’ ability to develop and respond to the challenges posed by liberalisation and Limit Africa to the production and export of low value goods (the so-called “poor-country” goods) based on the so-called comparative advantage argument. This is tantamount to condemning the continent and locking it into poverty.

We therefore recommend that:

14.       A moratorium be put in place on EPAs negotiations until the ESA countries have put in place adequate institutional mechanisms to deal with trade liberalisation as recommended by the African Union, UNCTAD, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa among others.

15.       ESA countries focus on developing its regional market, steps that have already been taken by consolidating the gains of the COMESA FTA, the Customs Union and the move to form a single FTA with the East African Community (EAC) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC)

16.       In light of the high food and energy prices, the climate crisis and the current global recession triggered by the financial crisis, ESA countries MUST reverse most of the commitments they have agreed under the IMF/World Bank SAP policies, the World Trade Organisation and the so-called interim Economic Partnership Agreements. This will allow the countries to implement favourable home grown policies that are in tandem with their development priorities

For Further Information please contact:
Rangarirai Machemedze
SEATINI
20 Victoria Drive
Newlands
Harare
Zimbabwe
rmachemedze@seatini.org
+263-4-788078
+263-4-776418

Or

Jane Nalunga
SEATINI
Plot 101 Kira Road , Kamwokya
Kampala
Uganda
Jnalunga09@gmail.com
+256-414-540856

  1. The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) is holding its Policy Organs meetings and the 13th Summit of Heads of State and Government in the resort town of Victoria Falls, online Zimbabwe from the 28th May to 8th June 2009 under the theme Consolidating Regional Economic Integration through Value Addition, discount Trade and Food Security.2.
  2. From the 2nd – 4th June 2009 the Council of Ministers will be meeting to deliberate on a number of issues affecting the COMESA region, including the current negotiations with the European Union (officially known as the European Community) on concluding Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs).

We recall that:

3.         The Eastern and Southern Africa Group (ESA) and the European Community (EC) senior officials met in Brussels on 28 April 2009 under the co-chairmanship of H.E Ambassadors S Gunessee and N. Wahab on ESA side as well as P. Thompson, Director, DG Trade on EC side. In their conclusions on the Interim EPAs initialled towards the end of 2007, the officials noted that:

On signature of interim EPA, EC confirmed that provided that an agreement is reached on translation, the interim Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) could be ready for signature around mid-May 2009. ESA confirmed its decision to host the signature in Mauritius and informed that the issue of the date of signature will be considered at the next ESA Council scheduled for the 4th June 2009 in Victoria Falls back to back with COMESA Summit with a view to agreeing on a mutually convenient date as well as its arrangement for the signing ceremony.

We are concerned that:

4.         The ESA countries (as represented by their officials) have confirmed their decision to host the signature of the interim EPAs and that they are already considering discussing the dates of such a ceremony when the outstanding and contentious issues in the interim EPAs have not been addressed and resolved.

5.         The contentious issues arising from the interim EPAs include, inter alia, involve far reaching commitments on tariffs reductions the freezing of export taxes that ESA countries have been using, the requirement that ESA countries should not increase duties on products from the EU beyond what they have been applying (standstill clause), liberalising “substantially all trade”, bilateral safeguards (for infant industry protection)-all these issues are still under negotiations. We take the precautionary principle and reiterate that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed.

6.         The EC has insisted that the first priority should be the signature of the interim EPA. The EU main interest is in market access which they may achieve in interim EPAs. This limits the scope of focussing on the real issues of interest to ESA countries that need attention before the signature. ESA countries should resist the pressure of rushing to sign the interim EPA when it is clear they will be mortgaging national and public assets to the EC.

We urge ESA countries to recognise that:

7.         Africa remains a marginal player in world trade (6% in 1980 and 3% in 2008) since the continent’s trade structure still lacks diversity in terms of production and exports. As such, negotiations to further liberalise (after Structural Adjustment Programmes) their economies will be a futile and possible suicidal exercise until certain pre-requisites are met and instituted within their economies. The emphasis on trade liberalisation alone as a means to stimulating growth and development is misplaced.

8.         The pre-requisites (as informed by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development) centre on addressing the structural constraints in ESA countries including

  • increased public investment in research and development, rural infrastructure — including roads — and health and education
  • overhauling the basic productive infrastructure to make production more reliable. Power generation, water supply and telecommunications are three key areas that need special attention. In addition, building a competitive manufacturing sector will require the strengthening of the support infrastructure needed for exporting, including roads, railways and port facilities.
  • encouraging cross-border trade infrastructure. It is unlikely that the manufacturing sector in Africa will grow to a competitive level if it is limited to small domestic markets. The smallness of individual African markets and the difficulty for most firms to access the markets of industrialized countries suggest that in the short and medium term, the expansion of intra-African trade could offer the opportunity to widen markets outside national boundaries. In so doing, some key infrastructure projects could be executed at the regional level, taking into account regional economic complementarities.
  • development of domestic policy regulatory frameworks to regulate the movement of goods and services in and outside ESA countries. This includes adopting policies that ensure Special and Differential Treatment including the Special Safeguard Mechanism in agriculture, use of tariffs, among other things

9.         Trade liberalisation has so far discouraged intra-regional trade in Africa as the reduction of tariffs, which reduce the preference margins given to other African countries, reduce the incentives for intraregional trade.

10.       The Cotonou Agreement (that forms the legal basis of negotiating EPAs), recognise that reciprocal agreements (EPAs) with the EC had to foster regional integration and to be based on current integration efforts. However, as the interim agreements have shown, this commitment has been negated as the current configuration of the EPA encompasses a major risk of undermining ongoing regional integration processes.

11.       Most countries in the region continue to suffer from food shortages and food insecurity. As a result they have been importing more food and energy (including inflation which was at 10.7% in 2008 up from 6.4% in 2007, the continental average excluding Zimbabwe) into the region. Trade liberalisation will exacerbate the problems of food insecurity.

12.       The ESA political leadership have an obligation towards their people and should ensure that whatever decisions they take should not put the lives of people in danger. This means all those targets of reducing poverty, reducing child and maternal mortality and increasing access to education for the people should be used as tools for making informed decisions especially with regards to trade negotiations.

13.       Given the above, liberalising ESA economies under the EPAs as already indicated by the interim EPAs will further weaken the countries’ ability to develop and respond to the challenges posed by liberalisation and Limit Africa to the production and export of low value goods (the so-called “poor-country” goods) based on the so-called comparative advantage argument. This is tantamount to condemning the continent and locking it into poverty.

We therefore recommend that:

14.       A moratorium be put in place on EPAs negotiations until the ESA countries have put in place adequate institutional mechanisms to deal with trade liberalisation as recommended by the African Union, UNCTAD, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa among others.

15.       ESA countries focus on developing its regional market, steps that have already been taken by consolidating the gains of the COMESA FTA, the Customs Union and the move to form a single FTA with the East African Community (EAC) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC)

16.       In light of the high food and energy prices, the climate crisis and the current global recession triggered by the financial crisis, ESA countries MUST reverse most of the commitments they have agreed under the IMF/World Bank SAP policies, the World Trade Organisation and the so-called interim Economic Partnership Agreements. This will allow the countries to implement favourable home grown policies that are in tandem with their development priorities

For Further Information please contact:
Rangarirai Machemedze
SEATINI
20 Victoria Drive
Newlands
Harare
Zimbabwe
rmachemedze@seatini.org
+263-4-788078
+263-4-776418

Or

Jane Nalunga
SEATINI
Plot 101 Kira Road , Kamwokya
Kampala
Uganda
Jnalunga09@gmail.com
+256-414-540856

“Democratic transformation of European finance, a full employment regime, and ecological restructoring – Alternatives to finance-driven capitalism”


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“Democratic transformation of European finance, a full employment regime, and ecological restructoring – Alternatives to finance-driven capitalism”


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CALLS FOR ACTION

AGREED UPON THE PARTICIPANTS OF THE ASSEMBLY OF SOCIAL MOVEMENTS


European Social Forum 17-21 September 2008, Malmö, Sweden


2009: To Change Europe


On the European level, we are witnessing a liberal and anti-social front on all domains: economic financial crisis, price increases, food borne illness crisis, privatization and disassembly of public services, movements against work reform, decisions of the European Court of Justice, dismantling of the Common Agricultural Policy, reinforcement of Fortress Europe against migrants, weakening of democratic and civil rights and growing repression,  economic cooperation agreements, military intervention in external conflicts,  military bases…  all this in a world where inequalities, poverty and  global and permanent war are increasing day by day.

In this context of global crisis, we want to reaffirm that alternatives do exist for global justice, peace, democracy and environment.

We, the European social movements gathering in Malmö, have committed on a common agenda in the way to lead the fight for “another Europe” and Europe based on the people’s rights.

 

on the social issue

We launch immediately a COMMON EUROPEAN CAMPAIGN against UE social and labour policies, first to oppose  specifically the EU directive on working time and UE decision on migrant labour.

This campaign will have different steps  ( ex : December the 6th in Paris)  and includes the objective of a massive joint mobilization at European level as soon as possible.

As a second step,  we  build up a large, inclusive and strategic conference/counter-summit of all the European social movement, in Brussels in March.

against NATO and war

we call  a large demonstration in April the 4th in Strasbourg/Kehl , centre of celebration of the 60th anniversary of NATO, to say “stop NATO” and dissolving this terrifying tool of war.  In the same day we call demonstrations in all countries in Europe. We propose the WSF in  Belem to declare the 4th of April a day of international mobilisation against Nato and all imperialistic military pacts.

against the climate crisis

we call for a global day of action on climate on December 6th during the Poznan summit in Poznan itself and al other the world. We are calling for a massive international mobilisation next year to make the critical Copenhagen talks in December 2009

AGAINST G8


In July 2009, the Sardinian and Italian social movement will invite all movements to come to Sardinia  where the G8 summit will be held in la Maddalena island to protest against G8 and its policies and to present our alternatives for global justice, peace, democracy and environment.