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Stop ISDS campaign 2019

The UN Convention on Biological Diversity’s (CBD) biosafety negotiations have been the target ofbiotech industry lobbyists and pro-biotech governments from the outset. But some have taken a more subtle approach to their lobbying, hiding their agenda beneath a veneer of public interest. Scrape beneath the surface however and their links to the biotech industry become clear. One such organisation is the Public Research and Regulation Initiative (PRRI) which appeared on the scene after the first biosafety negotiations under the CBD. Apparently independent from industry,this group claims to represent the “public research sector” – but how public is public research when GM is involved? Corporate Europe Observatory exposes PRRI as a corporate driven pro-biotech lobby group on biosafety issues

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This year provides a rare opportunity to end some of the most outrageous rights enjoyed by big business: the investor-state dispute settlement system or ISDS. Under ISDS corporations and the rich have sued governments for billions of euros – for anything from introducing health warnings on cigarettes to banning dirty oil drilling. Campaigners and social movements are uniting in 2019 to put an end to this parallel justice system for big business.

Whenever a government passes a law which could potentially affect profits, the ISDS system enables companies to hit back with lawsuits for damages - often worth billions of euros. Under the ISDS (Investor-State Dispute Settlement) system, corporations have already sued countries for anything from introducing health warnings on cigarettes to placing a moratorium on fracking.

Fresh opposition has been voiced against a highly controversial EU policy negotiation overseen by the new Romanian EU Presidency in the coming weeks: 160 mayors, parties, trade unions and NGOs, including Corporate Europe Observatory, today wrote to the Presidency to underline their strong concerns about the ‘Services Notification Procedure’.

Coal garnered much media attention, thanks to the Polish Government and US President Trump’s support. But it was the gas industry that really stunk up the conference, its influence seeping into all corners of the negotiating halls. Luckily activists and communities were present to call industry out and demand real solutions.