A PNA dispatch
Davos Conference Challenged by 20 Million People
Global Outrage against "The Globalisers of Misery"
Archives: January, 1998

Davos Conference Challenged by 20 Million People
from Play Fair Europe!

Yesterday the 1.000 foremost corporations of the world, associated in
the World Economic Forum, start their Annual Meeting in Davos,
Switzerland, with the stated objective of setting the "Priorities for the 21st
Century".

At the same time, 192 organisations from 54 countries, with an aggregate
membership of 20 million, released the Declaration against the Globalisers
of Misery, a statement that denounces the Davos meeting and "the
accelerating centralisation of political and economic power caused by
globalisation, and its gradual shift to unaccountable and undemocratic
institutions, such as the World Trade Organisation (WTO)" (1)

The statement, issued by academics, authors, journalists and a broad
coalition of organisations (including peasant movements, trade unions,
indigenous peoples, human rights activists, environment and development
NGOs and church-based groups), reflects the growing opposition to economic
globalisation, "which only benefits multinational business elites, while
increasing numbers of people are going hungry, unable to afford basic
health care and education, and forced to cope with environmental destruction."

The statement emphasises the "leading role [that the World Economic Forum]
played in the economic globalisation process", preparing the ground for
the launching of the Uruguay Round of trade negotiations and the
liberalisation of financial services.(2)

This denunciation of the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum is the
first activity of the Peoples' Global Action against "Free" Trade and the
World Trade Organisation (PGA), a new instrument for coordination created
by grassroots movements from all continents to enhance their work against
corporate rule. The PGA will hold its first worldwide conference in Geneva
on 23-25 February, convened by some of the foremost peoples' movements of
the world, like the Zapatista Front for National Liberation, the Movement
for the Survival of the Ogoni People, the Sandinista Workers' Union, the
Peasant Movement of the Philippines, the Indigenous Women's Network and
the Karnataka State Peasant Movement, among others. (3)

The collection of signatures for the statement will continue until the
evening of the 2nd of February. In the same period, protest actions
against the World Economic Forum will take place in all continents, ranging
from a demonstration in South Korea to street theatre in Mexico.

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(1) The complete declaration and the list of signatories can be retrieved
from the PGA web page at http://www.agp.org. For information about the
statement and the actions, please e-mail playfair@asta.rwth-aachen.de or
fax +34-8-524.11.21

(2) All direct quotations and factual information regarding the World
Economic Forum have been taken from the Forum's web page
http://www.weforum.org

(3) For more information about Peoples' Global Action Against "Free" Trade
and the World Trade Organisation (PGA) and its first worldwide conference
please visit the web page (http://www.agp.org) or e-mail
playfair@asta.rwth-aachen.de
************************************************************

Play Fair Europe! OviedoTel/fax +34-8-524.11.21
Pedro Masaveu 1 10 Eplayfair@asta.rwth-aachen.de
33007 Oviedo, Spaincheck http://www.agp.org
 

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