Dean Rohrer

为何要有公平贸易?

发自伦敦——在历史上,“公平贸易”这个词有着许许多多的含义。公平贸易联盟于1881年在英国成立以限制来自外国进口商品。在美国,商界以及工会都利用“公平贸易”法来构建经济学家约瑟夫•斯提格利茨(Joseph Stiglitz)所谓的“进口商品铁网屏障”。一系列“反倾销”法允许那些怀疑国外对手以低于成本的价格销售商品的企业要求政府征收特别关税来保护其免遭“不公平”竞争的威胁。

当然,那些好心的英国年度“公平贸易双周”组织者们可没有这些阴暗的保护主义思想。笔者也在活动中购买了两条公平贸易巧克力以及一罐公平贸易花生酱。他们可敬的目标就是希望绕过那些将农产品销往远方赚取额外利润的中间人,向发展中国家农民支付更高的产品价格。类似可可、咖啡,茶叶和香蕉这样的公平贸易产品与欧洲本地产品并无竞争,因此也并不存在任何贸易保护主义动机。

整个规则是这样的:通过满足“约定的劳工以及环境标准(比如最低工资和不施农药)”并以保底价出售农产品,穷国的农业合作社可以从公平贸易标签发放机构获得一个公平贸易标签。这一认证确保超级市场和其他零售商以额外溢价出售这些商品。于是第三世界国家的农民获得了高收入,而第一世界的消费者们则自我感觉良好:简直是天作之合啊!

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