Trade justice is a campaign by non-governmental organisations lobbying for changes to the rules and practices of world trade. These organizations include consumer groups, trade unions, faith groups, aid agencies and environmental groups.
The organizations campaigning for trade justice posit this concept in opposition to free trade, the advocates of which often also claim pro-poor outcomes. Trade justice advocates argue that truly free trade does not and will never exist, and that governmental policies on trade should be in the public interest, rather than the interest of wealthy entities who try to influence trade negotiation to benefit their individual interests. Advocates of trade justice argue that growing inequity and serious gaps in social justice, and the global export of terrorism, are symptoms of an economic system that permits harms to be exported to other countries, while importing their goods. They point to extinction, deforestation, social unrest, as consequences of globalisation, and in particular of an "unfair" globalisation. In the past, the responses sought by critics of the international trade system included various penalties on "unfair" goods. This argument generally made little headway against the long-term movement towards free trade; imposition of penalties for "dumping" was sometimes motivated by domestic political reasons such as the United States imposition of steel tariffs in 2001).
Today, the trade justice movement concentrates more on the abolition of agricultural subsidies and dumping, and to a much lesser extent on offsetting penalties on "unfair" goods. Indeed, although there are many who are still critical of free trade in general, there is a trend towards campaigning against what is seen as hypocrisy by developed countries in using protectionism against the poorest countries, especially in agricultural products, while requiring them to leave their own producers without protection.
Famous quotes containing the words trade and/or justice:
“My trade and my art is living. He who forbids me to speak about it according to my sense, experience, and practice, let him order the architect to speak of buildings not according to himself but according to his neighbor; according to another mans knowledge, not according to his own.”
—Michel de Montaigne (15331592)
“The only justice is to follow the sincere intuition of the soul, angry or gentle. Anger is just, and pity is just, but judgement is never just.”
—D.H. (David Herbert)