March 30, 2004

Public Citizen Announces Publication of New Book -- the Definitive Guide to the World Trade Organization

 

As Trade Emerges as Key Issue in Fall Elections, Whose Trade Organization? Examines Nine Years of WTO with Case-by-Case Accounts

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Public Citizen, the national consumer group, announced the release today of Whose Trade Organization?: A Comprehensive Guide to the WTO. Published by The New Press and distributed by Norton Books, the new publication by Global Trade Watch director Lori Wallach and colleague Patrick Woodall is available in bookstores nationwide today.

Whose Trade Organization? tracks the outcomes of the WTO during its nine years of existence, with chapters on the WTO’s impact on the economies and employment of rich and poor countries, as well as on the environment, food safety, public health, service sectors, agriculture and human rights. The book also details the WTO’s controversial dispute resolution system and connects WTO rules with U.S. job losses, unsafe food, attacks on domestic laws and burgeoning international inequality that makes headlines daily.

The book also provides insight into the underlying factors that caused the collapse of the 2003 Cancun Ministerial and the ongoing crisis at the WTO. It offers alternatives to the failed WTO model.

"This book comes at a critical time, when Americans and their elected representatives are examining the corporate managed trade agenda that has delivered more than 2 million job losses and attacked hard won consumer health and environment laws," Public Citizen President Joan Claybrook said.

Added Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, "This book makes clear and accessible to people that trade is only a small element of what the WTO’s 900 pages of rules actually control. Trade is the least of it. This book shows how the WTO chills government actions to fight sweatshops, make life-saving drugs available and protect endangered species – and even limits our elected governments’ ability to maintain policies on everything from meat inspection to media concentration. Nine years of WTO shows us that this model of global governance is not working."

Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch was created in 1995 to promote government and corporate accountability in the globalization and trade arena. A Harvard-trained lawyer, Wallach has testified on NAFTA, GATT-WTO and other trade issues before U.S. congressional committees, other countries’ legislatures, the U.S. International Trade Commission and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.

Patrick Woodall has been a public interest researcher in Washington for more than a dozen years and served as research director at Global Trade Watch from 1999-2003.

"If you think trade, globalization and the WTO aren’t your business or are boring, read this clear, compelling and downright scary account," said U.S. Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.).

Added Naomi Klein, columnist and author of No Logo, "A crucial guide – devastating and highly readable. Wallach and Woodall are warriors for democracy against its most powerful opponents."

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