Guest Speaker: Vidalina Morales
Investor Rights to Sue and Gold Mining in El Salvador
Vidalina Morales is a small scale farmer and a mother of five from El Salvador. In 2006 she discovered that her community was under threat from the El Dorado mining project by Canada-based mining company, Pacific Rim. She is now recognised as one of the leading voices in the environmental defense movement in El Salvador.
After widespread community protest, the government in El Salvador suspended mining licences for environmental and public health reasons. Pacific Rim is now using investor-state dispute settlement in a trade agreement to sue the government because this legislation. An Australian company, Oceania Gold, has a major shareholding in the company. Vidalina will speak on behalf of anti-mining group La Mesa.
These are the same investor rights to sue that we are campaigning against in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement and other trade agreements.