At the end of the Second World War the international community joined together to form organisations such as the United Nations, and eventually in 1995 The World Trade Organisation. These bodies were designed to help solve problems of an international nature. The WOT with the mandate of facilitating cross border trade and reducing trade barriers developed an agenda in the form of the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) which is slowly gathering opposition from institutes of higher and further education. The GATS is broad ranging and covers all sectors of service trade and provision from financial services to health care services, domestic regulation and market access. A major area of concern is the ambiguity of the position of universities within the GATS. The section on subsidies may impact on university and student funding while domestic regulation may affect the quality of the institutions and degrees. There is also a possibility that under current arrangements, the DfES regulations could be limited in helping to start up initiatives such as the e-university as they would have to give equal treatment to any similar foreign provision. National Unions of Students in many countries around the world have been campaigning against the GATS including The National Unions of Students in Europe (ESIB) who recently presented a declaration signed jointly with the European Universities Association, to the French Minister for education, Jacques Lang. At the St Andrews conference Marco Biagi voiced the view of the Coalition of HE students in Scotland "we have to face and fight the nightmarish prospect of GATS. This is effectively the privatisation of the education system." he told us. Chris Weavers (NUS VP Education) echoed these sentiments at a recent meeting with the NPC in which he stressed how NUS are standing together with the AUT, Unison & People and Planet to express their concerns. Chris will be talking in more detail about why the postgraduate community should be in opposition at the NPC OGM in Cardiff.