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How does the WTO agreement on government procurement impact human rights criteria for state purchasing decisions?

In the 1980s, Massachusetts adopted selective purchasing legislation that put companies doing business with the racist white government of South Africa at a disadvantage in bidding for state contracts. The adoption of selective purchasing and divestment policies by U.S. cities and states in the 1980s was a major factor leading to the collapse of minority rule in South Africa. Today, adoption of similar selective purchasing laws by Massachusetts or other states would violate U.S. commitments under the World Trade Organization's Agreement on Government Procurement.

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