In recent years, international trade measures and instruments have been used not only promote and develop trade, but also to promote important, ancillary measures such as human rights. For example, at the end of 2018, the United States, Mexico, and Canada agreed to include a provision promoting the inclusion of LGBTQ+ people in the workforce in a new trade agreement, the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). Similarly, the U.S. Government has recently imposed a ban on the importation of cotton and tomatoes from the Xinjiang region of China based on concerns about forced labor in the region and the treatment of the Uighur population. Although these measures go beyond the primary goals of trade agreements and other measures (i.e., to facilitate trade and eliminate trade barriers), they are a recognition that international trade policies have significant spillover effects and therefore cannot be considered in a vacuum, and it is expected that the new Biden Administration will use these tools to promote both its trade and human rights agendas. Come learn about an alternative tool and unique lens to address human rights considerations. The workshop will explore human rights provisions in FTAs, including LGBTQ+ related provisions, the inclusion of such provisions in future trade agreements, and the use of other trade tools such as sanctions to promote human rights . As part of the workshop, experts in the field will provide an overview of various trade tools such as FTAs, import bans, and sanctions, including their enforcement mechanisms, and will discuss how these trade tools compare to other international treaties and agreements that have been the primary bases of promoting human rights in the international arena. As part of this discussion, the panelists will consider the effectiveness of human rights provisions in FTAs, import bans, and sanctions, and whether trade-related instruments should be used as carrots and sticks to promote human rights. The workshop is intended for audiences with all levels of knowledge of international trade law and will include foundational introductions to each issue. Even if you have no current knowledge of international trade law, come learn about these hot topics in what is sure to be a lively and interesting discussion.
Speakers: Padideh Ala’i (American University, Washington College of Law); Justin Becker (Sidley Austin LLP); Stacy Ettinger (K&L Gates); William Isasi (Covington & Burling LLP)