Below is the keynote speech by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, Ms. Victoria TAULI-CORPUZ, at the First Session of the Intergovernmental Working Group on Elaborating a Legally Binding Instrument on Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with Respect to Human Rights.
It is for me a great honour and privilege to share these words with you in such a historic gathering. Today, I would like to provide some reflections on the various and important themes that this working group will be examining in accordance to the mandate granted by the Human Rights Council in resolution 26/9.
These reflections stem from my experiences in working with indigenous peoples in all parts of the world, first as an indigenous rights advocate, then as a member and chair of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, and currently in my capacity as Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples.
Indigenous peoples have been at the forefront of discussions regarding the human rights abuses committed by corporations since the 1970s.
Third FfD FAILING to FINANCE DEVELOPMENT
Civil Society Response to the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development
We, members of hundreds of civil society organizations and networks from around the world engaged in the Third FfD Conference, would like to express our deepest concerns and reservations on the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, based on both our ongoing contributions to the process and the deliberations of the CSO FfD Forum (Addis Ababa, 10-12 July 2015).
The Addis Ababa Action Agenda (AAAA) lost the opportunity to tackle the structural injustices in the current global economic system and ensure that development finance is people-centred and protects the environment. It does not rise to world’s current multiple challenges, nor does it contain the necessary leadership, ambition and practical actions. It undermines agreements in the Monterrey Consensus and the Doha Declaration and it is almost entirely devoid of actionable deliverables. We regret that the negotiations have diminished the FfD mandate to address international systemic issues in macroeconomic, financial, trade, tax, and monetary policies, while also failing to scale up existing resources and commit new financial ones. The AAAA is also deeply inadequate to support the operational Means of Implementation (MoI) for the Post-2015 Development Agenda, exposing an unbridged gap between the rhetoric of the aspirations and reality of the actions.
At a global summit that addressed how illicit financial flows interfere with reducing poverty, wealthy nations rejected a plan to expand the UN’s power to fight global tax evasion.
The plan, promoted by developing economies and transparency groups, was the subject of the meeting between delegations of UN members from around the world in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia this week. The goal was to figure out how to pay for the next generation of development goals that the UN will adopt later this year.
Global Financial Integrity (GFI) welcomes the statements made yesterday by former South African President Thabo Mbeki on illicit financial flows at the third Financing for Development Conference. At an event in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Mbeki noted that in order to address the issue of illicit flows "there needs to be a concerted and sustained campaign around the world." "The principle challenge we face" he said, "is one of implementation." He expressed optimism about the impact the Financing for Development conference will have on illicit flows noting that there is "a common commitment" to address the problem "at a global level and at a national level."
New report on how the response to the last global financial crisis has laid the ground for the next.
And on how some countries, like France are building up debts and others, such as Germany, are building up surpluses...
One of the more contested issues at the 3rd International Conference on Financing for Development currently underway in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia is how to improve/ensure global cooperation in tax matters. During preparatory negotiations in New York, a proposal surfaced that would upgrade a UN expert committee on the issue into a fullfledged political, and more importantly universal, commission. The commission could deal with issues like fighting tax evasion and avoidance, could set standards for double taxation agreements and for how to deal with transnational corporations. This proposal, however was rejected with force by most OECD governments.
More than four decades ago, the richer members of the international community committed to deliver at least 0.7 percent of their respective national incomes as official development assistance.
Sadly, less than half a dozen smaller countries have actually met this goal. Furthermore, ODA disbursements have not been stable, reliable or reflective of need, with continuing doubts about development effectiveness.
With pens still hovering over the Addis Ababa Action Plan, the outcome agreement for the Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FfD3), there is already a sense that for all the recent talk at the UN about ambition and transformation, it is falling short. For a financing document, the Action Plan includes an impressive number of references to issues at the core of sustainable and inclusive development, like social protection, essential services, decent work for all and sustainable industrialization. There are multiple references to consumption and production, a rebalancing of which, among the rich and the poor, will determine the future of our world.
As the modern day Greek tragedy reaches its climax, the global debt justice movement has launched a major campaign calling for a resolution that would avoid disaster.
The call is for debt cancellation for Greece, but it goes much further, asking for a European debt conference and the creation of fair United Nations rules to solve future debt crises wherever they may occur. And this call has already been answered by more than 12,000 people in less than a week.
How Africa can overcome being marginalised in the global economy