Letter for members of Canadian Parliament against the FTT Canada-Colombia
Congress of the Republic
Bogotá, 31 March 2009
INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMITTEE
OF THE CANADIAN PARLIAMENT
The undersigned Colombian senators and representatives most cordially invite you to not approve the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) signed by the governments of Canada and Colombia.
In brief, there are two main reasons for our request:
Almost twenty years of “free trade” in Colombia show that such policies cause major damage to the urban and rural economies of our country, place the State in the service of powerful monopolies and transnationals, further concentrate wealth, and increase unemployment and poverty. In addition, the current international economic crisis and Canada’s experience spanning several decades show that “free trade” is also not positive for Canadian workers.
The FTA between Colombia and Canada may serve powerful economic interests in the two countries, but not their respective peoples.
Secondly, the U.S. Democratic Party is completely right in stating that the Colombian government headed by President Alvaro Uribe would not pass a human rights test, especially with respect to the violence against trade unionists and the impunity that the government enjoys. It is obvious that an FTA between Canada and Colombia will be used in the United States and Europe as a sort of absolution of the Colombian government in this regard. Is the Canadian government certain that it can issue such an absolution? How does that decision serve the Canadian people?
Instead of the FTA, parliamentarians from the two countries must seek the best means of establishing relations between our peoples.
Jorge Enrique Robledo Castillo, Gloria Inés Ramírez, Luis Carlos Avellaneda, Alexander López, Parmenio Cuellar, Jesús Bernal.
Signing Representatives to the Chamber:
Germán Enrique Reyes Forero, Germán Navas Talero, Pedro Obando, River Franflin Legro, René Garzón, María Isabel Urrutia, Venus Albeiro Silva Gómez, Wilson Borja Díaz.