Public debate on the EU-CAN trade agreement




The EU Trade Agreements and the Privatisation of Andean Waters

BLUE OCTOBER is an international month of action for access to water celebrated by many communities and NGOs around the world. It challenges corporate control of water and aims to protect water as a shared natural resource that should be available to all. As part of BLUE OCTOBER this year, the Latin America Solidarity Centre, Debt and Development Coalition and Comhlámh would like to extend you an

Invitation to a Public Debate

The debate will explore the effect the Association Agreement between the EU and the Andean Community (CAN - Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru) will have on people’s access to water.

What is the EU-CAN Association Agreement?

It is an agreement currently at negotiation stage, which will include a Free Trade Area as well as progressive market liberalization. This liberalisation will include basic services such as water. Privatisation of water has had devastating effects for those living in poverty in many Latin American countries. The privatization of water has been at the heart of mass protests such as the Bolivian water wars. People’s power has reverted this policy in some countries and many European organisations are demanding that water be left out of trade agreements. As members of the EU we believe we have the possibility of influencing this aspect of the Agreement before it is signed in 2009.

Aim of the Debate

1. To bring to the public attention different positions around the Association Agreement;

2. To initiate a wider debate on the said Agreement;

3. To motivate different civil society organisations and other actors to position themselves in relation to the Agreement.


VENUE: Central Hotel, Exchequer Street, Dublin 2

DATE: Tuesday 30th October

TIME: 19:00hrs


Colin Roche, Oxfam Ireland's Campaigns and Advocacy Executive, will give a general overlook of the EU and Trade Agreements.

Bríd Brennan, A Transnational Institute (TNI) fellow, Brid is originally from Ireland, lived and worked in the Philippines for many years, and has been based in The Netherlands since 1992. She is co-founder of the European Solidarity Centre for the Philippines and also of RESPECT, a Europe-wide anti-racist network campaigning for the rights of migrant domestic workers. Currently Bríd co-ordinates the Alternative Regionalisms programme at TNI and anchors its work on Enlazando Alternativas, a European-Latin American bi-regional network focusing on Free Trade Agreements, Transnational Corporations and regional integration. She has edited and contributed to a number of publications including Reclaiming Public Water (2005).

Bríd will speak on the EU-CAN trade agreement and Water Privatization.

I hope that you can participate in this very important debate.

Is mise,

José Antonio Gutiérrez

Research & Development Officer