Friday, December 21, 2007
| Institute for Global Justice
|WHY GLOBAL JUSTICE?
Globalization has been hailed as a process that will bring welfare to nations and communities. Yet, the world is facing a tremendous imbalance and increasing poverty, violence and environmental degradation. There is thus a need to link globalization with economic, social, ecological and political justice at the global and national level. The main question is who sets the globalization agenda, who benefits and who loses.
Globalization, of which economic liberalization is an important component, is embedded in the World Trade Organization (WTO). Developing countries, including Indonesia, are negotiating from a disadvantaged position. Having ratified the establishment of the WTO and agreements of the Uruguay Round through Act No. 7 1994, Indonesia must comply with all regulations in the WTO. Thus since 1994, Indonesia has reduced its tariff drastically. For instance tariff for food is only 5% and there is a commitment to reduce the entire tariff for all products to 10% in 2003. Indonesia has ratified the Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs) agreement and put into 7 Acts. An important issue is the legalization of patenting on life through the new Patent Law in Indonesia (adaption of Article 27.3b of TRIPs) and the Plant Variety Protection Act that would negate farmer rights.
Many other WTO issues need to be analyzed in terms of its impact on economic, social and environmental justice to the people of Indonesia, as well as in other developing countries. The government, NGOs and the public often do not know the implications of the Uruguay Round / WTO Agreements and how to implement them by minimizing the negative impacts. In addition, through the World Bank/IMF loan contracts, the government is often forced to implement WTO-Plus policies that may have further negative impacts on the economic, social and environmental welfare of the communities.
Globalization of world trade is now entering a new era as a whole range of new issues (investment, competition policy, government procurement, and trade facilitation) are being pushed for negotiations at the WTO. The implications of these new issues need to be put in the context of global justice. Developing countries have suffered rather than benefited from existing WTO agreements, thus negotiation new issues may put more burden on them. It is therefore imperative to reorganize world trade in such a way that it brings about justice for all. For this to happen, we need to strengthen social movements on globalization by continuously putting global justice as the core of international relations and development discourse.
The Institute for Global Justice (IGJ) was formed in 7 August 2001 to address some of the globalization issues mentioned above. Its establishment was facilitated by INFID and by some individual members of the Indonesian NGO Coalition on WTO (KOP-WTO). It was registered as an Association by Notarial act No. 34 dated 22 April 2002.
The Vision of IGJ is �A Global Justice Order through Social Movements�. And the mission of IGJ is �To deconstruct globalization and facilitate social transformation in order to be critical towards globalization through research, advocacy, education and networking activities�.
The objectives of IGJ are:
1. The development of critical awareness of the public about globalization.
2. The existence of local, national and global policy to protect and to appreciate life values and
3. A New World Order based on pluralism, diversity, sustainability and justice.
BOARD AND FOUNDERS
The members of IGJ are individual activists with long term experiences in the field of environment, social movement, consumer movement and social justice.
Board and Member of IGJ:
1. Suchjar Effendi
2. Zoemrottin K. Soesilo
3. Nur Iman Subono
4. Indah Sukmaningsih
5. Sukma violetta
6. Maria Hartiningsih
7. Idaman Andarmosoko
8. Warsito Ellwein
9. Ivan Haddar
10. Harry Wibowo
IGJ will undertake the following programs:
RESEARCH AND PUBLICATION
IGJ will carry out mostly analytical research supplemented by field research whenever necessary. Research is aimed at identifying impacts and how to mitigate the negative impacts. Research will be carried out by experts affiliated with IGJ and by outside experts. The research results will be used as materials for public education.
Public education seeks to inform policy makers (the parliament, government ministries as well as the local government, bilateral donors and International Financial Institution) and the general public on globalization issues. Public education activities comprise of training workshops, public dialogue, discussions, and hearing with parliament and line ministries. The aim of public education is to create understanding of globalization issues and their impact on the daily lives of communities, the role of global institutions and the connection with national and regional policies. In particular, the public will be provided with analytical information on WTO.
This activity is a logical sequence to the two activities above. Full-fledged advocacy work will start after two years. However, if important issues come up, the institute will have to conduct advocacy work to at least bring about critical awareness of those issues. One such issue would be based on the on-going negotiations at the WTO and the preparation for the 5th Ministerial Meeting in 2003.
The Institute will liaise with existing groups that work on globalization issues. It will also liaise with local groups that are interested in globalization issues. The Institute will facilitate a network of experts and a network of students that would like to study globalization issues.
Priority issues are TRIPs (Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights), AOA (Agreement on Agriculture), GATS(General Agreement on Trade in Services) and the New Issues (Industrial Tariffs/NAMA non agriculture market access, Environment, Government Procurement, Trade Facilitation, Investment and Competition Policy).
Institute for Global Justice
Jl. Diponegoro No. 9, Menteng Jakarta Pusat 10310 Indonesia
Tel. 62-21- 3193 1153; Faks. 62-21- 391 3956
Email: email@example.com; Website: www.globaljust.org