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On 7 December 2005, Peru and the United States signed a bilateral treaty called the Trade Promotion Agreement.

The signing triggered a wave of public demonstrations in 2005. Prominent among the organizers were small farm organizations asserting that they would likely be hit the hardest by the resulting elimination of tariffs and other trade protections. The Peruvian government claimed that it would offer subsidies to reduce the agreement’s impact on small farmers, just as the United States does for its own agricultural sector. When the government failed to live up to this promise, the peasants marched in protest, demanding that the subsidies be released. In the midst of these protests, Peru ratified the FTA in June 2006.

February 2008 saw a new round of protests dubbed the “Paralización Nacional Agrícola” (National Agrarian Shutdown), in which thousands of small farmers participated. The protests, organized by the Comando Nacional Unitario de Lucha de los Campesinos Peruanos, were repressed by the authorities, leaving a total of four dead.

As part of the legislative package required by the FTA prior to its entry into force on 1 January 2009, the Peruvian executive branch – making use of the legislative powers granted by Congress – passed Legislative Decree 1015 on May 20 reducing the percentage of peasant and indigenous community members required to vote in order to sell or give concessions on their land in mountain and jungle areas.

In reaction, indigenous people from the Peruvian Amazon held several weeks of protests in August 2008 calling for the revocation of over 30 FTA-related decrees affecting their land rights. They were successful in getting the Peruvian Congress to revoke Decrees 1015 and 1073.

Also in August 2008, the Andean Community of Nations (CAN) amended Decision 486 regarding intellectual property in order to allow Peru to implement the FTA with the US. The amendment, initially rejected by Bolivia, brought CAN to the brink of dissolution.

The US-Peru FTA took effect on 1 February 2009.

last update: May 2012

Peru free-trade agreement backed by US House panel
The House Ways and Means Committee approved a free-trade agreement between the US and Peru, clearing the way for the accord to be considered by the entire House next week after months of delay.
Peru trade pact clears major hurdle in Congress
A key US House of Representatives committee gave preliminary approval on Tuesday to a free trade pact with Peru hailed by senior Democrats as the first installment of a new trade policy.
Senate panel gives initial okay to Peru trade deal
The US Senate Finance Committee approved on Friday a draft of a free trade agreement with Peru. Sen. Kent Conrad, a North Dakota Democrat and critic of most trade deals, urged colleagues to support the agreement as a bulwark against Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, an ardent foe of the United States.
Labor groups differ on Peru free trade deal
A coalition of US labor groups that split from the AFL-CIO several years ago is urging Congress to oppose the Peru free trade agreement while AFL-CIO will not.
Peru free trade agreement set to move in House after delays
The long-delayed free trade agreement between the US and Peru is heading for approval in US Congress next month. AFL-CIO, the country’s largest labor federation, testified this week that it won’t support the agreement, but won’t work to defeat it, either.
Peruvian workers warn about national strike
The General Confederation of Peruvian Workers (CGTP) warned on Tuesday that it will stage a national strike to demand higher salaries and to protest against the Free Trade Agreement with the United States.
US-Peru economic relations and the US-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement
A Congressional Research Service report for US Congress
Peru: protests against US trade accord rock country
Peruvian unionists, campesinos, leftists and nationalists came together to stage a massive one-day general strike on July 11.
Peruvian trade union protests and strikes continue
Despite threats of military repression by the government, activists said today they would continue the general strike called by the General Federation of Peruvian Workers, which is demanding a better distribution of wealth. Likewise, the National Agrarian Federation will continue its protest against a free trade agreement with the United States.
Peru unions strike US trade deal
The Peruvian National Federation of Mining and Metallurgical Workers announced that they will adhere to the general strike of state teachers demanding salaries and against the Free Trade Treaty (FTT) with the United States.