News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


Open letter to PM: TPPA puts profits before health

NZNO sends open letter to Prime Minister: TPPA puts profits before New Zealanders’ health.

The New Zealand Nurses Organisation (NZNO) is one of a more than 260 health sector individuals and organisations to sign an open letter to the Prime Minister today, warning of the threat to New Zealanders’ health from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).

Leaked texts of the TPPA trade agreement contain major provisions saying that business interests can sue governments for billions of dollars if a country introduces a law and a company would lose profits. These provisions in the trade agreements say that government regulation must not get in the way of investors’ profit.

Similar provisions in a trade agreement between Australia and Hong Kong are being currently used by tobacco companies to sue Australia for its laws on plain packaging of cigarette.

NZNO president, Marion Guy says, “Smoking is a huge health issue for Māori, yet we have delayed introducing plain packaging laws that we know will reduce smoking uptake, until the outcome of the law suits against Australia is known. We should not have to wait, or be put off from good health regulation because of provisions in trade agreements, especially when they are negotiated in secret.”

“The same thing could happen in any area where we might want tighter regulation to improve public health, for example around alcohol, advertising or fast food,” she says.

NZNO has already voiced strong concerns that the TPPA is likely to lead to higher costs for medicines because pharmaceutical companies will hold onto their patents for longer, preventing the release of the cheaper generic drugs. The TPPA may also interfere with the independent advisory functions of PHARMAC committees if they conflict with industry.

The open letter has been published today, funded by health professionals concerned about the need to protect New Zealanders’ health and access to medicines. Three similar letters have been sent to the Prime Minister or Minister of Health from a variety of different health-related groups over the last 18 months, with little or no response. A copy of the letter with the full list of signatures can be found here.

About the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement
The TPPA is a proposed trade agreement between New Zealand, Australia, United States, Canada, Japan, Chile, Peru, Mexico, Malaysia, and Vietnam. The TPPA is intended to enhance trade and investment among the TPP partner countries, promote innovation, economic growth and development, and support the creation and retention of jobs. It has been criticized globally by health professionals, internet freedom activists, environmentalists, organized labour, advocacy groups, and elected officials, in large part because of the proceedings' secrecy, the agreement's expansive scope, and controversial clauses in drafts leaked publicly.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Eddie Izzard: UK Comedy Legend Returns

Hailed as one of the foremost stand up comedians of his generation. Star of stage and screen. Tireless supporter of charity. Runner. Political campaigner. Fashion Icon... February 2015, Eddie Izzard will bring his massive FORCE MAJEURE world tour to New Zealand with tickets going on sale at 10am on Tuesday 28th October. More>>

Festival Starts 28 Oct: Improv Fest Makes Up New Show

For any other festival, finding out less than two weeks from showtime that half the cast of a programmed show can’t make it to New Zealand would be a nightmare. Instead, the New Zealand Improv Festival Director Jennifer O’Sullivan saw an opportunity ... More>>

NZ Music Awards Finalists: Lorde, Sol3 Mio Top 2014 Tuis Charge

Lorde has taken the music world by storm during the past year and she co-leads the 2014 Tui charge with five finalist spots. Joining her is newcomer family opera trio, Sol3 Mio. They are followed closely by Ladi6 and David Dallas, both up for four awards each. More>>

From 'Luther' Creator: Major New Zealand Crime Series For BBC

Libertine Pictures and writer Neil Cross have teamed up with leading international TV producer Carnival Films to develop a major new crime series set in Rotorua. Libertine will develop the contemporary drama series with Carnival, producer of internationally-acclaimed British period drama Downton Abbey, for the BBC. More>>

ALSO:

Family Statement: Death Of Ewen Gilmour

“Ewen was a much loved and cherished member of our family, he was a larger than life character and by his very nature was kind, generous and always giving of his time to those who asked for his help." More>>

ALSO:

Auckland: St. Jerome's Laneway Festival - Line-Up Announced

Traversing seven cities and three countries, the festival has well and truly settled into its home in each state. From the grassy knolls and towering silos at home in Auckland, to the sparkling backdrop of the Maribyrnong... More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: No Longer An Island

Simon Nathan reviews 'Zealandia: Our Continent Revealed': The idea that New Zealand is part of a large submerged continent is not new... There was renewed interest in the extent of offshore New Zealand from the 1970s onwards with the start of offshore drilling for oil and gas, and this was given impetus by a UN agreement which allowed countries to claim an Extended Continental Shelf (ECS). More>>

Art: Simon Denny Recreates Kim Dotcom’s Personal Effects

Who owns what? How has the internet changed our relation to the world? These are two of the many questions Simon Denny raises in the latest exhibition at the Adam Art Gallery, opening on Saturday 4 October. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news