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AGCS (General Agreement on the Trade of the Services) - End March he/it will be too late.

While all eyes are aimed on Iraq and the United States, the WTO, extends his/her/its influence on the world trade. The time is urgent. March 31, the 140 Member states (that is to say nearly all countries of the world) have communicated to the WTO lists it of the services that they are ready to to offer to the international competition in the framework of the AGCS (Agreement General on the Trade of the Services)

1. the services aimed by the AGCS don't only represent the trade transactions about a value of a few 1'300 billions of dollars every year, that is to say about 22% of the whole trade world, but they spread to nearly all human activities. The text doesn't mention less than 160 different economic sectors.

Mentioning the article 1 al. 3-b of the AGCS, the leaders of the WTO do us to believe that the public services are not involved, since the agreement includes" all services in all sectors, to the exception, of the services provided in the exercise of the governmental power ". But them omit to mention the following paragraph voluntarily, stipulating that alone the well stocked governmental services" nor on a trade basis, nor some competition with one or several suppliers of services" will be saved by the AGCS.

Therefore, the only fields to escape privatization are the justice, the police and the army. In clear, it means that of the fields as crucial that the distribution of water, the paths of fer,la health, the social services, the education, the culture, the sports, the leisures, the financial services, the post office, the energy, the environment, the telecommunications or the pickup of garbage fall under the influence of the AGCS. One understands the lusts that appear when one knows that the world market of the education is evaluated to a few 2'000 billions of dollars and the one of health to 3'500 billions of dollars. Your children in the Nestlé school or Vivendi or Monsanto? It is for tomorrow, since the agreement will enter in force at the end of the year 2005.

In accordance with the clause of the "national processing," the Member countries should grant the same conditions and subsidies to the powerful foreign multinationals that to the national, public or private companies. As much to say that these last won't resist to the last laws of the competition. The legal norms (labor law, protection of the environment, health, public, etc...) won't resist there non more. For example, one of the" forms of supplies" of the services planned by the famous AGCS well this issue: a company will be able to import the personal judged necessary to the supplying of a service on the territory of another country membre,important at the same time of the salary conditions distinctly lower than those in force in aforesaid country. That resembles to of the slavery.

One remembers more brief entry in stage the friend (Agreement Multilateral on the investment), concocted in the more grand secret and dead of have been unveiled in broad daylight; hey well the AGCS is his/her/its worthy heir. The less that one can say some, it is that the medias don't do a goodwill for to denounce the challenges of it. Even the parliamentarians of the countries involved have all pains of the world to to know which is afoot: In Switzerland, the Secretariat of state to the economy (Seco), who directs the file, only consult the economic contexts interested. The Federal Council won't learn about the" list of the offers" (the list of the economic sectors delivered in pasture to the multinationals, by opposition to the" list of the demands ", just as secret, set down to the WTO in last June) that some days before the one is put back here to the WTO.

To crown the all, impossible, after March 31, to do market, rear. If a government decides to re-establish some restrictions to the supplying of the services, he/it should open in counterpart another sector to liberalization, or to pay for the amends to the foreign suppliers to compensate their lack to win.

Of the science-fiction? Not at all. And guess hence this comes marvelous con? According to M. Hartidge, director of the division of the, services to the WTO: "without the enormous pressure done by the American sector of the financial services, (S) the agreement on the services would not have seen the day ".

The agcs is one of the agreements framework that the WTO (based in Geneva) wishes to become necessary; unlimited agreements that will never be finished truly, but in perpetual negotiation. The other agreements framework is:

- the agreement on the obstacles technical aucommerce,
- the agreement of the sanitary measures and phytosanitaires,
- the agreement on the property rights intellectual linked to the trade,
- the agreement on agriculture,
- the agreement on the investments linked to the trade,
- the agreement on the rules and procedures governing the ORD (the organ of Regulation of the Disputes, that is the "supreme court" of the WTO, accumulating the, functions of judge, started out and organ of recourse).

Author: Etié Monday March 10, 2003
Fondation Charles Léopold Mayer © 2003