Interpretive Clauses Tacked on to CAFTA
Legislators have been tacking interpretive clauses onto the Central American Free-Trade Agreement with the United States (CAFTA) this week and last, trying to clarify their positions and interpretations of controversial parts of the trade pact.
The Legislative Assembly s International Affairs Commission has passed a slew of motions that say the trade agreement, for example, will not intrude upon the nation s territorial sovereignty, sovereignty over the country s water resources, and the ability to set its own policies on the environment, education, labor and arms control.
There have been many interpretations, readings, and even myths read into CAFTA we took into consideration the concerns of all groups, and from there, we decided to clarify these points, said National Liberation Party legislator Fernando Sánchez, who is on the commission.
He said the interpretive clauses provide a chance for legislators to make clear their positions on details of the trade pact. It also clarifies the legislative spirit of the agreement when it was being debated, for judges to take into consideration if they are to make future rulings about the trade pact, Sánchez said.
Costa Rica is the only one of seven countries that have signed onto the trade pact that has not ratified it. Among other things, CAFTA would reduce tariffs between the United States and Central American countries and the Dominican Republic.
The Legislative Assembly voted two weeks ago to give the International Affairs Commission until Dec. 12 to send the trade pact to the assembly floor for further debate so it can be voted on (TT, Nov. 3).
You may be interested
Pic of the Day: Costa Rica’s Isla Nublar (aka Cocos Island)Alejandro Zúñiga - April 18, 2019
Isla Nublar, the setting for much of the "Jurassic Park" series, is unfortunately not a real Costa Rican island. Cocos…
Costa Rica holds Maduro regime responsible for diplomat’s safetyAFP and The Tico Times - April 18, 2019
The Costa Rican Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday that it places responsibility with the Venezuelan government of Nicolás Maduro for…
Venezuela withdraws diplomatic credential from Costa Rican diplomatAFP and The Tico Times - April 17, 2019
Venezuela withdrew the diplomatic credential from the Costa Rican chargé d'affaires on Tuesday in retaliation for the country’s acceptance of…