[DEBATE] : Re: Morales to South America...letter
p.waterman at inter.nl.net
Tue Oct 10 10:44:49 BST 2006
Am I mistaken in assuming that this letter reflects the impact of the global
justice and solidarity movement, and the World Social Forum on the
government of Bolivia?
If I am not mistaken, then the conclusion would seem to be: build up the
movement and develop a radical-democratic civil society at all levels!
----- Original Message -----
From: "Riaz K Tayob" <riazt at iafrica.com>
To: "GroupSEATINI" <seatini at yahoogroups.com>; "Debate List"
<debate at lists.kabissa.org>
Sent: Tuesday, October 10, 2006 10:09 AM
Subject: [DEBATE] : Morales to South America...letter
"Let's construct a real Community of South American Nations in order to
Proposal from President Evo Morales to the head of states and people of
South America, October 2, 2006
In Cusco, December 2004, the presidents of South America took up the
commitment of developing a "South American space, integrated in
political, social, economic, environmental and infrastructural spheres"
and affirmed that "South American integration is and has to be an
integration of the peoples".
In the Declaration of Ayacucho they declared that the principles of
freedom, equality, solidarity, social justice, tolerance, respect for
the environment, are the fundamental pillars for this community to
achieve an economically and socially sustainable development "that takes
into account the urgent necessities of the most poorest, as well as the
special requirements of the small and vulnerable economies of South
In September 2005, during the First Meeting of Heads of States of the
Community of South American Nations held in Brazil, a priority agenda
was approved that included, amongst, other things, the themes of
political dialogue, asymmetries, physical integration, environment,
energy integration, financial mechanisms, economic trade convergence and
the promotion of a social integration and social justice.
In December of that same year, at an Extraordinary Meeting held in
Montevideo, the Strategic Commission of Reflection over the Process of
South American Integration was conformed to elaborate "proposals
destined to pushing forward the process of South American integration,
in all its aspects (political, economic, commercial, social, cultural,
energy and infrastructure, amongst others)."
Now at the Second Summit of Heads of States we need to deepen this
process of integration from above and below. With our people, with our
social movements, with our productive business owners, with our
ministers, technicians and representatives. That is why, at the next
Presidential Summit to be held in December in Bolivia we are also
pushing forward a Social Summit for dialogue and construction in a joint
manner, a real integration with the social participation of our peoples.
After years of having been victims of misnamed "development," today our
people have to be the actors in finding solutions for the grave problems
of health, education, employment, unequal distribution of resources,
discrimination, migration, exercising of democracy, preservation of the
environment and respect for cultural diversity.
I am convinced that our next meeting in Bolivia needs to pass from
declarations to action. I believe we need to advance towards a treaty
that makes the Community of South American Nations a real South American
bloc at the political, economic, social and cultural level. I am sure
that our peoples are closer than our diplomacies. I believe, with all
due respect, that we, the presidents, need to shake up our foreign
ministries so that they rid themselves of routine and confront this
I am conscious of the fact that our South American nations have
different processes and rhythms. That is why I am proposing a process of
integration at different speeds. Let us walk an ambitious but flexible
road. One that allows all of us to be a part of it, allowing each
country to take up the commitments they can, and allow those who want to
accelerate the pace do so towards the conformation of a real political,
economic, social and cultural bloc. That is how other processes of
integration have developed in the world and it is the most adequate path
for advancement in the adoption of supranational instruments that
respect the times and sovereignty of each country.
Our integration is and has to be an integration of, and for, the
peoples. Trade, energy integration, infrastructure, and finance need to
be at the function of resolving the biggest problems of poverty and the
destruction of nature in our region. We cannot reduce the Community of
South American Nations to an association that carries out projects for
highways or gives credit that ends up essentially favouring the sectors
tied to the world market. Our goal needs to be to forge a real
integration to "live well". We say "live well" because we do not aspire
to live better than others. We do not believe in the line of progress
and unlimited development at the cost of others and nature. We need to
complement each other and not compete. We need to share and not take
advantage of our neighbour. "Live well" is to think not only in terms of
income per capita but cultural identity, community, harmony between
ourselves and with mother earth.
To advance in this path we propose:
At the social and cultural level
let's liberate South America of illiteracy, malnutrition, malaria and
other scourges of extreme poverty. Let's establish clear targets and a
mechanism of monitoring, supporting and completing these objectives that
are the basis for the construction of an integration at the service of
Let's construct a South American public and social system to guarantee
access to all the population for services such as education, health and
potable water. Uniting our resources, capacities and experiences we will
be in a better condition to guarantee those fundamental human rights.
More employment in South America and less migration. The most valuable
thing we have is our people and we are losing it due to a lack of
employment in our countries. Labour casualisation and the shrinking of
the state have not brought about more employment as they promised two
decades ago. Governments need to intervene in a coordinated manner with
public policies to generate sustainable and productive jobs.
Mechanisms to diminish disparity and social inequality. Respecting the
sovereignty of all countries, we need to commit ourselves to adopting
measures and projects that reduce the gap between rich and poor. The
wealth needs to be and should be distributed in a more equitable manner
in the region. For that we need to apply diverse mechanisms of a
monetary, regulatory and redistributive type.
A continental fight against corruption and mafias. One of the largest
problems that our societies confront is corruption and the establishment
of mafias that begin to perforate the state and destroying the social
fabric of our communities. Let's create a mechanism of transparency at
the South American level and a Commission to struggle against corruption
and impunity that, without violating juridical sovereignty of nations,
carries out investigations of grave cases of corruption and illegal
South American coordination with social participation to defeat
narco-trafficking. Let's develop a South American system with the
participation of our states and our civil societies to support us, to
articulate and banish narcotrafficking from our region. The only way of
defeating this cancer is with the participation of our peoples and with
the adoption of transparent measures and coordination between our
countries to confront the distribution of drugs, money laundering,
trafficking of precursors, fabrication, and production of cultivations
that are derailed for these ends. This system needs to certify the
advance in our struggle against narcotrafficking, surpassing the tests
and "recommendations" that have until now failed in the fight against
Defense and pushing forward of cultural diversity. The greatest wealth
of humanity is its cultural diversity. The homogenization and marketing
for monetary gains or for domination, is an attack against humanity. At
the level of education, communication, administration of justice, the
exercising of democracy, territorial ordering and the management of
natural resources, we need to preserve and promote the cultural
diversity of our indigenous peoples, mestizos and all population that
have migrated to our continent. At the same time we must respect and
promote an economic diversity that comprehends forms of private, public
and social-collective property.
Decriminalisation of the coca leaf and its industrialization in South
America. Just as the fight against alcoholism can not lead us to
criminalizing barley, nor can the struggle against narcotics lead us to
destroying the Amazon in search of psycho-tropical plants, we must
finish with the persecution of the coca leaf which is an essential
component of the cultures of the Andean indigenous peoples and promote
its industrialization for beneficial aims.
Advance towards a South American citizenry. Let's accelerate the
measures that facilitate migration between our countries. Guaranteeing
the full vigilance of human and labour rights and confronting
traffickers of all types, until we achieve the establishment of a South
At the economic level
Complementary and not naked competition between our economies. Rather
than following the path of privatization we need to support ourselves
and complement each other to develop and promote our state companies.
Together we can forge a South American state airline, a public
telecommunication service, a state electricity network, a South American
industry of generic medicines, a mining-metallurgical complex, in
synthesis, a productive apparatus that is capable of satisfying the
fundamental necessities of our population and strengthen our position in
the world economy.
Fair trade at the service of the peoples of South America. Within the
South American Community fair trade must take primacy to benefit all
sectors, and particularly small businesses, communities, artisans,
campesino economic organizations and producer associations. We have to
move towards a convergence of CAN [Community of Andean Nations] and
MERCOSUR [Common Market of the South] under new principles of solidarity
and complementation that surpasses the rules of the free markets that
have fundamentally benefited the multinational and some exporting sectors.
Effective measures to surpass the asymmetries between countries. In
South America we have at one extreme countries with a Gross Domestic
Product per capita of $4000 to $7000 per year and at the other extreme
countries that barely reach the $1000 per inhabitant. To tackle this
grave problem we have to effectively comply with the all the
dispositions already approved in CAN and MERCOSUR in favor of the less
developed countries and assume a group of new measures that promote
processes of industrialization in those countries, that give incentives
to exportation with added value and improving the terms of exchange and
prices in favor of smaller economies.
A Southern Development Bank. If in the South American Community we
created a Bank of Development based on 10% of the international reserves
of the countries in South America we would begin with a fund of $16,000
million that would allows us to effectively attend to projects of
productive development and integration under the criteria of financial
recuperation and social content. As the same time, this Bank of the
South could be strengthened with a guarantee mechanism based in the
current value of primary materials that we have in our countries. Our
"Bank of the South" needs to surpass the problems of other "development"
banks that charged commercial interest rates, financed essentially
"profitable" projects, conditioned access to credit on a series of
macroeconomic indicators or the contracting of predetermined provider
and executing companies.
A compensation fund for the social debt and asymmetries. We need to take
up innovative mechanisms of financing like the creation of taxes on
airline tickets, tobacco sales, arms trade, financial transactions by
the large multinationals that operate in South America, so as to create
a compensation fund that allows us to resolve the grave problems of the
Physical Integration for our people and not only for exportation. We
have to develop infrastructure in regards to roads, waterways, and
corridors, not just or only to export more to the world, but rather
above all else to help communication between the peoples of South
America, respecting the environment and reducing asymmetries. Within
this framework we need to revise the Initiative for South American
Regional Integration (IIRSA), taking into account the preoccupations of
the people that want roadways to be built within the framework of poles
of development and not highways used only for exports, through the
middle of corridors of misery, and to increase external indebtedness.
Energy Integration between consumers and producers in the region.
Let's form an Energy Commission of South America to:
- Guarantee the supply of each one of our countries privileging the
consumption of resources existing in the region
- Ensure, via common financing, the development of the necessary
infrastructures so that the energy resources of the producing countries
reach all South America.
- Define fair prices that combine the parameters of international prices
with solidarity criteria aimed towards the South American region and
redistribution in favor of the less developed economies.
- Certify our reserves and stop depending on the manipulations of the
- Strengthen integration and complementation between our state gas and
At the level of environment and nature
Public policies with social participation to preserve the environment.
We are one of the most privileged regions in the world in terms of
environment, water and biodiversity. This obliges us to be extremely
responsible with these natural resources which can not be treated as
just another product to be sold, forgetting that on these depends life
and the actual existence of the planet. We are obliged to conceive of an
alternative and sustainable handling of natural resources recuperating
the harmonic practices of cohabitation with nature of our indigenous
people and guaranteeing the social participation of the communities.
South American Committee for the Environment to elaborate strict norms
and impose sanctions on the large companies that do not respect these
rules. Local political interests can not be relied upon to guarantee
respect for nature, that is why I propose the creation of a
supranational organisation that has the capacity to dictate and carry
out environmental norms.
South American convention for human rights and access for all living
beings to water. As a region privileged with 27% of fresh water supplies
in the world, we need to discuss and approve a South American Convention
on Water that guarantees access to this vital resource to all living
beings. We need to preserve water, in its different uses, from processes
of privatizations and the market logic that are imposed in trade
agreements. I am convinced that this South American treaty on Water
would be a decisive step towards a Global Convention on Water.
Protection of our biodiversity. We can not allow the patenting of
plants, animals and live materials. In the South American Community we
have to apply a system of protection that on one side avoids the piracy
of our biodiversity and on the other side guarantees the domination of
our countries over these genetic resources and traditional collective
At the level of political institutions
Let's deepen our democracies with greater social participation. Only a
greater openness, transparency and the participation of our people in
the taking of decisions can guarantee that our Community of South
American Nations advances and progresses down the right path.
Let's strengthen our sovereignty and our common voice. The Community of
South American Nations can be a grand lever to defend and affirm our
sovereignty in a globalised and unipolar world. Individually as isolated
countries some can be more easily susceptible to pressure and external
conditioning. Together we have more possibilities to develop our own
distinctive options in different international scenarios.
A Commission of Permanent Convergence to elaborate a treaty for CSN and
guarantees the implementation of agreements. We need an agile
institution, transparent, un-bureaucratic, with social participation,
and which takes into account existing asymmetries. To advance
effectively we need to create a Commission of Permanent Convergence made
up of representatives of the 12 countries which, leading up to the Third
Summit of Heads of States, elaborates a project for a treaty for the
Community of South American Nations, taking into account the
particularities and rhythms of the distinct nations. Similarly, this
Commission of Permanent Convergence, via groups and commissions, should
coordinate and work together with CAN, MERCOSUR, ALADI, OTCA and
difference sub regional initiatives to avoid duplicating efforts and to
guarantee the application of the commitments we take up.
We hope that this letter strengthens the thoughts and construction of
proposals for an effective and positive Second Summit of Heads of States
of the Community of South American Nations, I leave you reiterating my
invitation for our meeting on 8-9 December in Cochabamba, Bolivia.
Evo Morales Ayma
President of the Republic of Bolivia.
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