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CAFTA


Clock ticks on free trade pact with US
As Costa Rican lawmakers return today from a weeklong vacation, time grows tight to pass two laws required to implement the Central American Free-Trade Agreement with the United States (CAFTA). Lawmakers must pass a bill amending the agreement, as well as a bill that strengthens intellectual property rights, before an Oct. 1 deadline.
Amendments to CAFTA trade deal passed
The long and arduous road toward final approval by Costa Rica of the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) with the United States has suffered yet another delay.
Costa Rican Congress approves ending its 84-year-old insurance monopoly
Costa Rica is saying goodbye to its 84-year-old insurance monopoly as it opens the industry to national and international competition.
Report from El Salvador: Why They All Keep Coming
Having just spent time south of the border in a poor country whose major export is people, I’ve seen firsthand what’s driving people north - and why conventional political solutions aren’t going to deter desperate Salvadorans from coming to the U.S. Largely missing from this year’s campaign is any serious reappraisal of our foreign, military, and trade policies that have forced millions Latin Americans to uproot themselves and seek opportunities for a better life far from home.
Dominican Republic-U.S. trade deficit jumps to US$688M on imports
In the first three months this year the country posted a trade deficit with the United States of US$688 million, much higher than the US$426 million in the year earlier period, reports newspaper Hoy.
Sweetheart Deal
The deadline for completion of a new farm bill has been pushed back to May 16. But the endless wrangling over a piece of legislation that Congress once hoped to finish in 2007 has not induced a significant change in the thinking of those who regard it as an opportunity to lock in lush new benefits for American agricultural producers.
U.S. sock makers wage war on Gildan imports
Just two years after launching an ambitious plan to become a major player in the North American hosiery business, Gildan Activewear Inc. finds itself caught up in an international trade dispute over the flood of socks into the U.S. from Honduras.
Bullets and bananas: The violence of free trade in Guatemala
The ongoing violence against workers in Guatemala makes it clear that talk of free trade improving human rights in developing countries is lost in translation.
Resistance to UPOV and the privatisation of life in Costa Rica
Interview with Silvia Rodríguez Cervantes of Costa Rica’s Biodiversity Coordination Network about the national struggle against joining UPOV (Union for the Protection of New Plant Varieties) as required by CAFTA.
Guatemala accused in CAFTA labor complaint
Guatemalan and US labor groups filed a complaint Wednesday with the US Department of Labor alleging that Guatemala had failed to uphold its own labor laws as required under the Central American Free Trade Agreement.
Dominican Government sacrificed RD$2.3B with Free Trade
Figures from the Customs Agency (DGA) show Dominican Government has sacrificed RD$2.3 billion since the United States-Central America Free Trade Agreement began.
U.S. or E.U.? Tico politicos split over best foreign investor
Costa Rican lawmakers are divided over who makes a better investor in their country, the United States or the European Union, according to a recent questionnaire.
Dominican business criticizes FTAs
Dominican businesspeople do not see any advantages on the Free Trade Agreement signed between the Dominican Republic, the US and Central America (CAFTA-DR), said Ignacio Mendez, president of the Dominican Industrials Association.
The ravaging effects of capitalism on my hometowns
What will become of Costa Rica? That’s the question on my mind, now that my adopted country has narrowly accepted CAFTA. Our national slogan is "Pura vida!" meaning "pure life," and it’s commonly used as an affirmation that life is good. It’s easy to understand how such an expression could catch on here: Costa Rica has virtually no enemies, a temperate climate, and a hell of a lot of good beaches. However, as an expatriate whose previous hometowns have been despoiled by global capitalism, I find it difficult to imagine that life will be as pure or as good once the effects of CAFTA begin to kick in.
Costa Rica telecom market seen opening soon
Costa Rica, one of the few Latin America countries still with a state-run telephone sector, is expected soon to open to big foreign players as part of a trade deal with the United States.
Dominican Republic not eligible for money from DR-CAFTA
The Dominican Republic and Guatemala are the only two countries in DR-CAFTA that have not been able to access money from the Millennium Account due to internal issues.
Trade deal spurred foreign investment record, Dominican Central Bank says
Direct foreign investment in Dominican Republic jumped to US$1.7 billion in 2007, year in which the DR-Cafta trade accord took effect in the country, the Central Bank said.
Gildan may get caught up in U.S. election politics on Honduras tariff ruling
Canadian sock manufacturing giant Gildan Activewear Inc. (TSX:GIL) could get caught in the middle of U.S. election-year politics as the Bush administration decides whether to end the company’s duty-free shipments of socks from Honduras.
Costa Rican Indigenous protest FTA
Hundreds of Costa Rican indigenous people began a protest against the Free Trade Agreement between Central America, the Dominican Republic and the United States. They accused the FTA of imposing the use of patented seeds that prevent traditional crops and warned that the use of transgenic seeds from the United States would affect ancestral crops closely linked to the people’s view of the world and spirituality.
Costa Rica wins 7-month CAFTA deadline extension
Costa Rica has won a seven-month extension from its U.S. and regional trade partners to pass laws required for its entry into the CAFTA free trade pact, President Oscar Arias said on Wednesday.