Across the political spectrum, the American people sent a clear message in this election year: we’ve mismanaged globalization.
Friday’s announcement that the TPP would be tabled indefinitely was a testament to the growing resentment.
Decades of “free-trade” have padded the wealth and influence of the 1% across the globe, while leaving communities, workers, and the planet behind. For years, a broad international coalition fought back against this failed model of trade. It was this coalition that defeated the Trans-Pacific Partnership and that will work for fair trade policies that benefit the global community in the months and years to come.
TPP’s fatal flaw was its closed process dominated by corporate advisors. Our interests were never taken seriously in the TPP negotiations process, nor in negotiations for the last twenty years of status quo free-trade deals. There is another way.
The 75 member organizations of the Washington Fair Trade Coalition insist on a new approach to globalization through open and effective political engagement that balances legitimate public interests with investor interests. We call for a new approach to globalization where:
- The goal of trade is to improve living standards everywhere – not maximum possible trade; not lower prices.
- All stakeholders must be involved in any new negotiations process, and public interest must be taken seriously
- Policies must prioritize labor rights, human rights, public health, food security, and the environment, in particular taking on the two defining problems of our time: climate change and inequality
- National and local strategies are legitimate and necessary. Trade policy should encourage local innovation and decision-making.
The failure of the “free-trade” model has opened the door for a completely new approach to globalization. Corporate interests already dominate the Trump transition team. Donald Trump’s message is divisive and based on aggressive power relationships.
Our path forward is fundamentally different, inclusive and based on building on common interests. It will take a strong coalition of international, national, and local groups to rewrite the global rulebook, ensuring a trade policy that works for all of us.
Sign the petition calling on the new administration (and our local legislators) to put people and the planet first in any new trade policies.
Washington Fair Trade Coalition’s statement on U.S. withdrawal from TPP
Letter from Citizens Trade Campaign to the new administration outlining what we would need to see in any NAFTA renegotiation