Monday 10 December 2018, 18:00 - 20:00

Life Along the Copper Value Chain: the Swiss Commodity Trading Hub and its Impact on the Global South

Organised by the Graduate Institute, Swiss Network for International Studies, University of Basel and UNRISD

Auditorium Ivan Pictet A1B
Maison de la Paix, Geneva

The growing influence of transnational market intermediaries, including financial actors, has profoundly changed the global commodities trade, “de-linking” markets in commodities from the material conditions of production and use and “re-linking” them to offshore marketplaces and trading hubs, such as Switzerland.

How do these processes affect local lives along the copper value chain, from the mining pits and the surrounding communities in Zambia, through towns and harbours on African transport corridors, through Swiss trading firms and banks to sites of industrial production and recycling? What needs to be done in order to move towards more ethical trading and production systems conducive to sustainable development and the vision of the 2030 Agenda?

This moderated roundtable will bring together researchers and civil society activists from “Valueworks: Effects of Financialization along the Copper Value Chain”, a research project funded by SNIS, as well as representatives from business and policy makers, to discuss the Swiss commodity trading hub and its impact on the Global South.

Opening Remarks

  • Filipe Calvao, Assistant Professor, The Graduate Institute
  • Paul Ladd, Director, United Nations Research Institute for Social Development/UNRISD

Valueworks: What Have We Learned?

  • Rita Kesselring, Principle Investigator, Valueworks Project, University of Basel
  • Marja Hinfelaar, Director of Research and Programmes, Southern African Institute for Policy and Research/SAIPAR

Roundtable Speakers

  • Stefan Leins, University of Zurich
  • Dale Mudenda, University of Zambia and Southern African Institute for Policy and Research/SAIPAR
  • Barbara Müller, Swiss Apartheid, Debt, Reparation Campaign/ADR
  • James Nicholson, Head of Corporate Responsibility, Trafigura
  • Jean Rossiaud, Member of Parliament, Canton of Geneva and Co-director, World Democratic Forum


  • Isolda Agazzi, Journalist

Discussion with the Audience

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