At this year’s WTO ministerial there will be debates about adopting a new E-Commerce agenda to regulate Internet trade – but one of Latin America’s leading NGOs working on the issue is not allowed to go.

Derechos Digitales writes:

With dismay and annoyance we have received the notification that the Argentine Government has decided to cancel our participation in the eleventh ministerial meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO), which will be held in Buenos Aires from December 10 to 13, 2017.

At least 63 civil society organizations are in a similar situation. The Argentine Government did not provide any explanation to support this decision.

It is an unprecedented and surprising measure, contrary to any minimum democratic standard and which removes any vestige of legitimacy that the meeting might have had. In this way, once again, the representatives of civil society are excluded from the debate on the rules of world trade.

We hope that the Argentine Government will amend this irregular situation and give the corresponding explanations.

It is shocking that the WTO would move forward with a debate about regulating the internet through trade agreements and not include the leading voices on public and consumer interests in the field.