Global Trade

More than 90% of Royal Bank of Scotland shareholders voted against the bank's pay and pensions policy at its annual general meeting in Edinburgh. RBS does not have to make any changes as a result, saying it was a "substantive" protest at Sir Fred Goodwin's £703,000 a year pension. Sir Philip blamed RBS's difficulties on its acquisition of the Dutch bank ABN Amro in 2007.
Social audits of clothing factories in developing countries are failing to detect excessive and forced overtime, abusive treatment of workers and violations of freedom of association, says a report by the Clean Clothes Campaign, a coalition of trade unions and pressure groups, to be published today.
The Methanex Corporation, a Canadian chemical company, stumbled today in its attempt to sue the U.S. government for almost $1 billion over a crucial California clean water law. The Sierra Club welcomes the decision by a tribunal under the North America Free Trade Agreement of the Americas (NAFTA). But we are concerned that the narrow procedural ruling left the door open for future anti-environmental decisions by this tribunal or by NAFTA tribunals in other cases.
Conclusion to a new CorpWatch report that shines a light on the role of six major banks in Greece, Ireland and Spain in the EuroZone crisis that left borrowing countries deep in debt.
Patrick Daniel, the CEO of Enbridge Inc, is bullish about the future of unconventional oil from Canada's massive tar sand deposits. His company not only operates North America's longest crude oil and liquid pipelines, but transports 12 percent of the oil that the U.S. imports daily. Canada's bitumen, or dirty crude, lies under a forest area the size of England and is arguably the world's last remaining giant oil field.
Still, about 70 of the 500 protesters outside the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade were arrested during a ''search and rescue mission'' to retrieve a working draft of the proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas.
European Union governments delivered a blow Monday to the biotechnology industry, allowing Austria and Hungary to maintain national bans on growing genetically modified crops from Monsanto. The market for genetically engineered crops is worth several billion dollars worldwide.
Welcome to the Coke side of life. Africa's planned legal action is just the latest in a litany of alleged human rights and environmental abuses in developing markets that has made Coca-Cola a cause celebre.
The Obama administration is backing Shell Oil after abruptly changing sides in a landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that could make it even more difficult for survivors of human rights abuses overseas to sue multinational corporations in federal courts. The case will be heard on October 1.