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As the G20 group of major economies begins an emergency coronavirus summit online on Monday, anti-poverty campaigners Global Justice Now called for international coordination to secure an unprecedented package of measures to build public healthcare capacity, especially in low-income countries which stand most exposed to the pandemic threat. 

In the current COVID-19 crisis, it is clearer than ever that our lives depend upon a strong and effective publicly run NHS. We need to know whether the government is keeping to its promises that the NHS is not on the table in a trade deal with the US or whether the details of negotiations are undermining that. This Trade Bill should make it a requirement to update parliament on what is going on and to conduct negotiations openly and transparently.

 

As the UK trade minister Greg Hands visits the United States for trade talks (1), an alliance of civil society groups this morning delivered nearly 70,000 signatures to the Department for International Trade calling on the UK government to commit to keeping controversial ‘corporate courts’ out of post-Brexit trade deals.

Reacting to the UK government's announcement of additional funding for coronavirus vaccine research (1), Heidi Chow, pharmaceuticals campaigner at Global Justice Now said: "Funding for research into a coronavirus vaccine is vitally important, but the government must apply public interest conditions to this funding to prevent pharmaceutical companies from charging high prices which would restrict widespread access. This is even more the case if aid money is being used to pay for it."

On Monday, the UK is expected to release its negotiating objectives for a trade deal with the United States, at the same time as it begins formal negotiations with the European Union over future trade arrangements.

A US-UK trade deal could have far reaching implications for global justice – this briefing outlines the big issues to watch out for, including what we already know has been discussed, the secrecy of the negotiations, and the timeline for the talks.

Aid

CDC Group using international aid money to invest in private health and schools, fossil fuel projects and companies accused of human rights abuses, many based in tax havens.

As campaign group Global Justice Now finished the final day of their legal attempt to force the UK government to release details of trade talks with more than a dozen countries this week, government lawyers admitted that further trade talks are underway with unnamed countries, which the public is not even allowed to know are happening. 

Aid

A sixth development secretary in five years speaks volumes about the government’s lack of interest in fighting global poverty.

Liz Truss has today put out some reassuring platitudes about her trade plans leading to a land of milk and honey, but the leaked trade papers have already revealed a different story.

‘No alignment’ pledge shows UK is heading for a ‘shock doctrine Brexit’, say campaigners

“He’s clearly rattled by the scale of opposition to a US trade deal – and he should be”.

The undersigned civil society organisations are concerned that the UK is seeking to rollover the EU-Morocco Association Agreement into UK legislation without due attention to the ongoing Moroccan occupation of Western Sahara.

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