The FTAA, currently being negotiated by 34 countries of the Americas, is intended to be quite possibly the most far-reaching trade agreement in history. The FTAA stands for the free trade Area of the Americas, a name given to the process of expanding the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) to all the other countries of the Western Hemisphere except Cuba. With a population of 800 million and a combined GDP of $11 trillion (US), the FTAA would be the largest free trade zone in the world. If signed, the FTAA will be the most far-reaching free trade agreement in the world, with a force of magnitude that will reach into every area of life for the citizens of the Americas.
However, the proposed FTAA would also give corporations new “rights” to challenge and compete for every publicly funded service now provided by governments – from health care and education to social security, culture and environmental protection. If adopted, it could remove the ability of every government to create or maintain laws and regulations protecting the health, safety and well-being of their citizens and the environment they share. Worse, the FTAA would become the model for future world trade agreements, eventually rendering health, environmental and other laws around the world secondary to those of international trade. For these reasons and more to be discussed in this essay, Canada should not embrace the FTAA since the benefits of free trade clearly do not outweigh the costs. The goal of the FTAA is to impose the failed NAFTA model of increased privatization and deregulation hemisphere-wide.
... through the roof. [ Frequently Asked Questions About the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) ] If I were hired as an advisor ... Besides these previously stated effects, Possible effects of the FTAA agreement on services include: + Removal of national licensing standards ... state will rather produce their items in third world countries and with free trade the profits are be maximized. Besides the ...
Imposition of these rules would empower corporations to deter governments from setting standards for public health and safety, to safeguard their workers, and to ensure corporations do not pollute the communities in which they operate. They would also handcuff governments’ public interest policymaking and enhance corporate control at the expense of citizens throughout the Americas. FTAA would deepen the negative effects of NAFTA we ” ve seen in Canada, Mexico and the U. S. over the past years and expand NAFTA’s damage to the other 31 countries involved in the agreement. The FTAA would essentially combine the elements of every global trade and investment agreement – existing and proposed – into one big agreement, with new authority over every aspect of life in Canada and the Americas.
Not only do negotiators plan to adopt and expand existing NAFTA and WTO provisions on “agriculture,”investment,”market access,”intellectual property rights,”subsidies,”competition policy,”government procurement” and “dispute settlement,” but they also seek to introduce new provisions related to “services” such as health care, education, energy, water, broadcasting, publishing, postal services and the environment. The repercussions and affects of FTAA would be massive. Under NAFTA, Canada has already surrendered control of its energy resources to the United States – a fact that has led directly to massive exports, lost conservation, higher oil and gas prices for Canadian consumers and increased pollution of the environment. Under the FTAA, all of those areas mentioned above are at equal risk to being surrendered to members of the FTAA.
... other groups. Subsidies are also one form of social services as the Government tries to shoulder various expenses incurred in some aspects ... of social service that tries to provide individuals and groups who have been treated harshly or unequally by the government (Chambers ... Gets What: Analysis of Types of Benefits and Services in Social Policy and Social Programs: A Method for the Practical Public ...
Another area of concern would be the FTAA would lead to privatization of services. Much like the recent crises in both Bolivia and Ecuador, the privatization of services, such as water and fuel, can hurt those most in need. The prices soar, and this leads to basic services being unaffordable to parts of the Canadian population. Essentially, the rich would become richer and the poor would become poorer. Large corporations would be benefiting from this agreement because they have many more countries to expand in for free; however the poor will become shafted and left behind as products become more expensive. Perhaps the most important reason Canada should not embrace the FTAA is because of the repercussions the agreement may have on our social security.
The expanded powers proposed for the FTAA in combination with NAFTA and the introduction of “universal coverage of all service sectors” pose a grave threat to Canada’s social programs. Universal health care, public education, child care, pensions, social assistance and many other social services are now delivered by governments on a not-for-profit basis. Until the FTAA negotiations, Canada has always maintained that these social programs were an important right of citizenship for all Canadians, and have defended them from trade agreements. However, with the FTAA, the Canadian government is opening up itself, and every other level of government, to trade-sanctioned threats by transnational service corporations which aim to break down the existing government monopolies in all the countries involved. “Services” is the fastest growing sector in international trade, and of all services, health, education and water are becoming the most important of all. Global expenditures on water services now exceed $1 trillion every year; on education, they exceed $2 trillion; and on health care, expenditures exceed $3.
5 trillion. In Canada, the service sector accounts for 75 percent of all jobs. These and other services have been targeted by powerful entrepreneurial corporations that are aiming at nothing less than the complete dismantling of public services by subjecting them to the rules of international competition and the discipline of the WTO and the FTAA. If they succeed in doing this, which is a good possibility, what would happen to the 75 percent of jobs in Canada? With all of this, it is evident that there are many things wrong or could go wrong with the FTAA.
... wealth obtained from taxes. The government of Canada views their as part of a social contract. The government encourages and supports economic growth through ... , problems and controversy arise.The problem of abuse of Canadian social services has become prominent in 1996. The general consensus of organizations ...
Perhaps if the agreement was changed and negotiated more, it would become more feasible for Canada to participate in. However in its current stage, it is obvious after some research that this is definitely not a good idea. For all of this and more, it is plain to see that Canada should not embrace the FTAA since the benefits of free trade clearly do not outweigh the costs.