Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


Minority Government must think again on trade

21 July 2000


Minority Government must think again on trade

The Green Party is urging the minority Labour led Government to reconsider its endorsement of the former National Government's trade liberalisation stance.

The call follows revelations that the new Government has confirmed its commitment to liberalisation in a statement to G8 Summit which opened in Okinawa Japan today.

"Labour should stop parroting National's free trade mantra," said Green Party Co-Leader Rod Donald. "At the political level they don't seem to realise that they are a minority government with a coalition partner which is almost as sceptical of free trade as the Green Party.

"At a practical level they refuse to acknowledge that not only has free trade failed to deliver the benefits previous Governments claimed it would but also that embracing free trade contradicts and undermines its own economic development strategies such as regional development and the new apprenticeship scheme.

"The government seems so desperate to pursue the free trade agenda that it is prepared to consider enormous concessions to get an agreement with Singapore as the first step to a wider South East Asian free trade zone.

"Not only does the Singapore Government want to be insulated from any possible impact of Treaty of Waitangi settlements, which would give overseas investors a potential advantage over local businesses, but it is also prepared to cut the local content quota below the threshold we have with Australia.

"Allowing exports from Singapore to only have 40% Singaporean content would give back door entry for Asian sweatshop goods into New Zealand and make a mockery of the Labour Government's recent tariff freeze," he said.

The Singaporean's want the local content quota down to 20%. Goods imported from Australia under CER have to have 50% local content.

"If trade negotiations Minister Jim Sutton succumbs to Singaporean demands it could spell the end of what's left of New Zealand's clothing industry, destroying many businesses and putting 20,000 workers on the economic scrap heap.

The Green Party questions the Government's statement to the G8 summit claiming that recent international studies have demonstrated that "free and open trade and international trade and investment have benefited development", saying the evidence is open to challenge.

"If the Government is really serious about giving the third world a hand up they would support the international call for the immediate cancellation of the debts of the world's poorest countries, we have written to the Government seeking their support for the Jubilee 2000 call for 'debt cancellation', he said.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>

ALSO:

Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news