Democracy Alive in Texas
Democratic Party of Texas Officially Opposes MAI
Note -- This resolution passed on November 14, 1998.
Resolution on Multilateral Agreement on Investment and other Global Free-Trade Agreements being negotiated by Multinational Corporations
WHEREAS the proposed Multilateral Agreement on Investment (MAI) has been negotiated without input from U.S. citizens, elected officials or the media, and
the US Council for International Business (a corporate lobby) has driven the negotiations and developed the MAI, while non-governmental labor, small business, environmental and community organizations (NGOs) have been virtually shut out, the MAI text gives Multinational Corporations and foreign investors legal standing to sue sovereign governments (federal, state or local) directly, such disputes to be tried in international tribunals in hearings at which the said sovereign governments will have no voice and,
foreign investors and multinational corporations will be compensated for actions consumers and governments take affecting profits of those investors and corporations, even when the intent of such actions is for protecting the public interest, and
WHEREAS the MAI mandates foreign investors and multinational corporations be treated equal to domestic companies, challenging tax incentives for small businesses and laws designed to foster community employment and vibrant local economies, because such incentives and laws inherently discriminate against large foreign investors and multinational corporations, and
under MAI, governments would no longer be allowed to distinguish between countries or corporations based on considerations of human rights, labor, environmental, or public health criteria, and
MAI gives multinational corporations power without responsibility or accountability, and
WHEREAS, upon signing, contracting parties are bound to the terms of the MAI for 20 years, with no "outs", and
the MAI broadens limitations on national sovereignty under World Trade Organization rules in favor of one set of global rules, enforced by an unaccountable international corporate tribunal, and
WHEREAS the MAI constitutes a threat to our democratic form of government,
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that the Democratic Party of Texas calls on the U.S. Government to:
i) call off negotiations on the current draft of the MAI immediately,
ii) promote crafting a new MAI document with full participation of non-governmental organizations representing citizens' interests in the areas of human rights, labor, environment, small business, and public health, equal to the level of participation granted corporate lobbyists, and
iii) renegotiate MAI in accordance with the demands placed before the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, by the coalition of non-governmental organizations representing over 70 countries.
For more information, contact the party office at 919 Congress Avenue, Suite 600, Austin, TX, 78701. 512/478-9800
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