No. 11/1999


Dateline: 15 March 1999

WNII is an electronic information service of INES,
the International Network of Engineers and Scientists for Global Responsibility

Editor: Tobias Damjanov, e-mail: < >
INES homepage: http://www.mindspring.com/~us016262/ines.html
INES International Office < >
INES Chair Prof. Armin Tenner < >

INES Congress 2000

''Challenges for Science and Engineering in the 21st Century''

Stockholm, 14-18 June 2000


Congress-related queries: mailto:


No new or changed email or web addresses in this issue.

NOTE: All INES e-mail addresses and homepages are available upon request from: <

Do not forget to inform us about changes of your email address or your homepage!


Abolition 2000 homepage: http://www.abolition2000.org

For the latest nuclear weapons abolition grassroots news, visit: http://www.napf.org/abolition2000/news/

1999 NPT PrepCom: New data confirmed ^


The 1999 Preparatory Committee Meeting for the Review Conference of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT PrepCom) is now being scheduled for 10-21 May (the venue remains New York).

It seems relatively certain that the NGO oral presentations will be scheduled for the afternoon of Tuesday, May 11. Regarding other NGO panels, workshops and other events, please inform the NGO Committee on Disarmament as soon as you are clear about any plans to organize such events.

Roger Smith, Network Coordinator, NGO Committee on Disarmament mailto:




"Global-Info" - Listserver in Russian language

The Russian organisation "Center for Environment and Sustainable Development - Eco-Accord" in co-operation with the Federation of Peace and Conciliation has launched a news-release service called "Global-Info". It is in Russian language only and will cover major events as well as give contact details for further information.

Priority areas are:

To subscribe for "GLOBAL-INFO" simply send a message to <> indicating: subscribe <YOUR E-MAIL ACCOUNT> "GLOBAL-INFO"


MAI: 150 Nordic NGOs sign letter on investment and the UN

150 Nordic NGOs now in a joint open letter call upon the governments of Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Norway to press for all possible future negotiations on an investment agreement to take place within the UN framework and to be based on UN conventions. The letter reads as follows: 

To the governments of Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Norway 

The negotiations on a multilateral agreement on investments - MAI - are in an upheaval. On December third 1998, the OECD announced that the MAI is no longer being negotiated, although discussions on rules for investments will continue. 

The current MAI draft has been subjected to massive criticism from people's organisations and others around the world for, among other things, its potential consequences for the ability of national states to direct investments so that they give the desired development effects for people, culture and the environment. Many believe that the draft agreement is based on an oversimplified analysis of the role of investments in development. The overarching goal of MAI is to increase the security and rights of investors, based on the premise that all investments always lead to improvements. We feel, however, that investments can have both positive and negative consequences for people and the environment, depending on, among other things, how "investment" is defined and the political framework in which investments take place. 

In particular, considering the current international financial crisis, the growing gap between rich and poor, the increasing environmental problems and the challenge of maintaining cultural diversity, there is reason to study and considerably improve understanding of the relationship between investments and development, before constraining the world in a binding investment agreement. 

The present situation is completely open, both in terms of the content and the forum for negotiation for new regimes for international investments. 

The Nordic countries have a special position as staunch defenders of global democracy and the UN system. These countries have also distinguished themselves by a continuous commitment to the global environmental issues and the rights of poor countries. The Nordic nations now have the chance to make a pioneering contribution by taking the initiative to discussions on the legal framework for international investments based on completely different principles. 

We believe that the overriding goal of a framework of regulation for investments must be that investments should contribute to a just and sustainable development for humans and the environment. Regulations must be based on, and facilitate, the realisation of the values and intentions expressed in the UN conventions and the action programmes from the major UN conferences. The current MAI concept does not do this. 

We encourage the Nordic governments to propose and forcefully press for a new discussion on international investments on this basis to be initiated as soon as possible. Regulations for foreign investments will affect developing countries profoundly, and we feel that it is fundamental that poorer countries have the right to participate in discussions and possible negotiations. But many developing countries, like many people's organisations, are critical of the proposal for the WTO to be the new negotiating forum, as they believe that it lacks both transparency and genuine democracy in practise. Rather, we feel that if and when negotiations on an investment agreement are resumed, this should be done within the framework of the United Nations, as the universally recognized democratic forum for issues of importance for the world's development. This would also be natural for an agreement which is founded on values and conventions developed within the UN system. 

We therefore call upon the Nordic governments to propose and press for all possible future negotiations on an investment agreement to take place within the UN framework. 

March 1999 

For details, mailto: (Maud Johansson, Forum Syd, Sweden)



NOTE: Events listed here are being published only once due to limited space. Changes, however, will be taken into account (marked with ''UPDATE'')  

1999 Abolition 2000 Annual General Meeting ^

The meeting is open to individuals and members of organisations that have signed the Abolition 2000 Statement and all those interested in joining the campaign to bring about the abolition of nuclear weapons. 

On 16 and 17 May, the Annual General Meeting will continue on the Abolition 2000 Walk organised by For Mother Earth. All Members of Abolition 2000 are STRONGLY URGED to join the Abolition 2000 Walk from The Hague to NATO Headquarters in Brussels. 

For more details, mailto: or goto: http://www.motherearth.org/walk99.htm


1999 Parliament of the World's Religions http://www.cpwr.org/iii/parliament1999sa/index.html

Main theme: " A New Day Dawning: Spiritual Yearnings and Sacred Possibilities" 

For more details, go to the URL indicated above or mailto: 

For registration, mailto:

================ end of No. 11/1999 what's new in ines ================ ^