Corporate greed protest sign a.mina/Flickr

La très discrète prise de pouvoir des grandes entreprises

NEW YORK – Les USA et le reste du monde sont engagés dans un grand débat sur les nouveaux accords commerciaux, souvent appelés "accords de libre-échange". En fait il s'agit d'accords commerciaux façonnés pour répondre aux intérêts des grandes entreprises, essentiellement européennes et américaines. On les qualifie aujourd'hui de "partenariat", tel le Partenariat transpacifique (TPP). Mais ce n'est pas un partenariat entre égaux, car les USA en dictent les termes. Heureusement, leurs partenaires sont de plus en plus réticents à s'y engager.

Il est facile de comprendre pourquoi. Ces accords s'étendent bien au-delà du commerce, car régissant aussi les investissements et la propriété intellectuelle, ils imposent des changements fondamentaux au cadre juridique et réglementaire des pays signataires, sans intervention ou contrôle par des institutions démocratiques

Il y a eu très peu d'expropriations au cours des dernières décennies et les investisseurs peuvent se protéger en s'assurant auprès de l'Agence multilatérale de garantie des investissements (MIGA), une filiale de la Banque mondiale, ou en souscrivant une assurance proposée par les USA et d'autres Etats. Néanmoins les USA exigent que des dispositions concernant la protection des investisseurs figurent dans les accords de partenariat comme le TPP, alors que beaucoup de leurs "partenaires" bénéficient d'un systéme judiciaire qui protége le droit de propriété aussi efficacement que le leur. Ce sont les dispositions les plus inéquitables et les plus malhonnêtes de ces accords. Certes, les investisseurs doivent être protégés contre des Etats voyous susceptibles de s'emparer de leurs biens, mais ces dispositions ne traitent pas de cela.

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