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Why We Say No to CAFTA: Analysis of the Official Text (Bloque Popular Centroamericano, Alliance for Responsible Trade, Hemispheric Social Alliance

This document is the product of a collective effort by a group of Central American and U.S. women and men. It is part of a comprehensive public-education campaign on the U.S.-Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) being carried out by Central American and U.S. organizations in the Bloque Popular Centraomericano and the Hemispheric Social Alliance.

By Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch

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This document is the product of a collective effort of analysis of the official text of the free-trade agreement “negotiated” by the Central American and U.S. governments. That agreement is currently in the process of ratification by the National Assemblies and Congresses of those countries.

This effort was made in order to contribute to public understanding of CAFTA through the “decoding” of its logic and contents, so as to identify the social, economic, political and environmental impacts that its implementation would generate.

CAFTA is much more than a simple trade agreement, as it includes a range of mechanisms that combine prohibitions on governments with rights for foreign investors on such issues as investment, national treatment, intellectual-property rights, market access, public services and access to bidding on public contracts