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Making Profits with War: Canadian Corporations in Colombia

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Project Description

Research questions we require energy to investigate and report on include:

What are the main Canadian corporations in Colombia?

What are their activities there?

How do they interfere with national legislation to secure their investments? (for example, the Canadian Mining Corporation played an important role in the creation of the new national mining code which was written in collaboration with the Canadian International Development Agency).

What are the main corporate lobbies behind the Free Trade Agreement between Canada and Colombia?

Do Canadian corporations employ private security forces operative in Colombia?

Peasant organizations are requesting research support to identify the corporations acting on their land. A resume of the research paper will be translated into Spanish to be shared with some Colombian organizations, and will serve as a guideline to target main Canadian corporations, and to follow their behaviour in Colombia in order to organize public campaigns in Canada in the context of the new Free trade agreement with Colombia.

Description of final project

The length of the final research product is flexible, but the research process may be described in two parts.

First, we would like to have well organized notes or detailed write-ups listing the main Canadian corporations acting in Colombia, their field of activities and the regions of their investments.

Following the completion of this document, following research will focus on one particular Canadian corporation, including a history of their presence in Colombia, their influence on national legislation, and their relation to armed groups in Columbia, and will also describe their Canadian presence (do they also conduct business or other activities in Canada? Do they have representation in Canada?) in order to propose some guidelines for a public campaign that might focus on the corporation as a visible target in Canada.

Research Methodology

The researcher will start by looking at the data collected by the Canadian Automobile Workers (CAW-TCA), and will work in close relation with the researcher employed by the CAW. The researcher will also have access to Colombian research on foreigner mining corporations. The research work will demand making contact with national groups dealing with foreign investors and international economic development agencies in order to have access to lists of Canadian investors and their Colombian activities.

Skills Required

The candidate will have an interest in economic development and international trade, and must already present some basic knowledge regarding the Colombian conflict

Strong sense of autonomy and self-motivation

Capacity to make official contacts in order to gain access to inaccessible information

Some basic skills in Spanish will help to extend the research to include Colombian official papers


Projet Accompagnement Solidarité Colombie (PASC)

About the Organization

PASC is a radical non-profit organization based in Montreal. We propose to concretize direct solidarity by sending international witnesses to Colombian peasant communities in order to bring support to these communities, to affirm their rights as civil populations living within a war zone, and to support these communities’ efforts in claiming their rights to land and self-determination.