Thursday - Sunday, March 13 - 16, 2003
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
|Travel||Boston and New England|
Sense of the Conference Resolution regarding the
General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) Negotiations
March 13 - 16, 2003, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
(At the conclusion of this conference, the participants reviewed as a group the following statement. This statement represents general agreement; however, no one was asked to sign it, nor did everyone necessarily agree with all of it.)
Whereas the negotiations process associated with the General Agreement on Trade
in Services seeks to reduce and eliminate so-called "barriers to trade,"
Whereas the European Union has requested that distribution and other services related to alcohol and tobacco products be included in the current round of negotiations,
Whereas such inclusion could lead to the reduction or elimination of certain U.S. laws and regulations implemented by States and communities to control harm related to alcohol and tobacco consumption,
Whereas, scientific research points to the critical importance of such measures in preventing and controlling epidemics of public health problems related to alcohol and tobacco use,
Whereas the public health community in the United States and other countries, including health, safety and medical professionals, educators, researchers, social service and mental health providers, and local, state and federal officials and community members recognize that these laws and regulations are important tools in protecting the safety and health of our citizens,
Then let it be resolved that we urge the U.S. Trade Representative to reject the E.U. request to make commitments in alcohol- and tobacco-related services in the current round of negotiations and exclude these services in its requests to other countries,
And let it further be resolved that we encourage the U.S. Trade Representative to take measures to protect State and community policies that address alcohol and tobacco consumption as public health issues in the current and future rounds of negotiations,
And let it further be resolved that we ask the U.S. Trade Representative to promote transparency and democratic accountability throughout the trade negotiations process, with the fuller inclusion of the public health community.
Adopted by acclamation at closing conference session, March 16, 2003.