Call for the signature of NGOs, trade unions and social movements Belem, February the 1st of 2009

Let’s put finance in its place !

13 February 2009


For a new economic and social model [1]

The financial crisis is a systemic crisis that emerges in the context of global crises (climate, food, energy, social…) and of a new balance Balance End of year statement of a company’s assets (what the company possesses) and liabilities (what it owes). In other words, the assets provide information about how the funds collected by the company have been used; and the liabilities, about the origins of those funds. of power. It results from 30 years of transfer of income from labour towards capital. This tendency should be reversed. This crisis is the consequence of a capitalist system of production based on laissez-faire and fed FED
Federal Reserve
Officially, Federal Reserve System, is the United States’ central bank created in 1913 by the ’Federal Reserve Act’, also called the ’Owen-Glass Act’, after a series of banking crises, particularly the ’Bank Panic’ of 1907.

FED – decentralized central bank : http://www.federalreserve.gov/
by short term accumulation of profits by a minority, unequal redistribution of wealth, an unfair trade system, the perpetration and accumulation of irresponsible, ecological and illegitimate debt, natural resource plunder and the privatization of public services. This crisis affects the whole humanity, first of all the most vulnerable (workers, jobless, farmers, migrants, women…) and Southern countries, which are the victims of a crisis for which they are not at all responsible.

The resources to get out of the crisis merely burden the public with the losses in order to save, with no real public benefit, a financial system that is at the root of the current cataclysm. Where are the resources for the populations which are the victims of the crisis? The world not only needs regulations, but also a new paradigm which puts the financial system at the service of a new international democratic system based on the satisfaction of human rights, decent work, food sovereignty, respect for the environment, cultural diversity, the social and solidarity economy and a new concept of wealth. Therefore, we demand to:

- Put a reformed and democratised United Nations at the heart of the financial system reform, as the G20 G20 The Group of Twenty (G20 or G-20) is a group made up of nineteen countries and the European Union whose ministers, central-bank directors and heads of state meet regularly. It was created in 1999 after the series of financial crises in the 1990s. Its aim is to encourage international consultation on the principle of broadening dialogue in keeping with the growing economic importance of a certain number of countries. Its members are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, India, Indonesia, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, USA, UK and the European Union (represented by the presidents of the Council and of the European Central Bank). is not the legitimate forum to resolve this systemic crisis.
- Establish international permanent and binding mechanisms of control over capital flows.
- Implement an international monetary system based on a new system of reserves, including the creation of regional reserve currencies in order to end the current supremacy of the dollar and to ensure international financial stability.
- Implement a global mechanism of state and citizen control of banks and financial institutions. Financial intermediation should be recognised as a public service that is guaranteed to all citizens in the world and should be taken out of free trade agreements.
- Prohibit hedge funds Hedge funds Unlisted investment funds that exist for purposes of speculation and that seek high returns, make liberal use of derivatives, especially options, and frequently make use of leverage. The main hedge funds are independent of banks, although banks frequently have their own hedge funds. Hedge funds come under the category of shadow banking. and over the counter markets, where derivatives Derivatives A family of financial products that includes mainly options, futures, swaps and their combinations, all related to other assets (shares, bonds, raw materials and commodities, interest rates, indices, etc.) from which they are by nature inseparable—options on shares, futures contracts on an index, etc. Their value depends on and is derived from (thus the name) that of these other assets. There are derivatives involving a firm commitment (currency futures, interest-rate or exchange swaps) and derivatives involving a conditional commitment (options, warrants, etc.). and other toxic products are exchanged without any public control.
- Eradicate speculation on commodities Commodities The goods exchanged on the commodities market, traditionally raw materials such as metals and fuels, and cereals. , first of all food and energy, by implementing public mechanisms of price stabilisation.
- Dismantle tax havens, sanction their users (individuals, companies, banks and financial intermediates) and create an international tax organisation to combat tax competition and evasion.
- Cancel unsustainable and illegitimate debt of impoverished countries and establish a system of democratic, accountable, fair sovereign borrowing and lending that serves sustainable and equitable development.
- Establish a new international system of wealth sharing by implementing a progressive tax system at the national level and by creating global taxes (on financial transactions, polluting activities and high income) to finance global public goods.

We call on NGOs, trade unions and social movements to converge in order to create a citizen struggle in favour of this new model. We urge them to mobilize all over the world, in particular in the face of the G20, from March 28th onwards.

See over 110 signatories




Footnotes

[1This call is the result of a series of seminars at the World Social Forum 2009 in Belem, which involved among others : Action Aid, Attac, BankTrack, CADTM, CCFD, CEDLA, CNCD, CRID, Eurodad, Global alternatives Forum, IBON, International WG on Trade-Finance Linkages, LATINDADD, Networkers South-North, NIGD, SOMO, Tax Justice Network, Transform!, OWINFS, War on Want, World Council of Churches.

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