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

 


Government Faces US Lawsuit Floodgates

Rt Hon Winston Peters
New Zealand First Leader
Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs
20 April 2012

Government Faces US Lawsuit Floodgates

New Zealand First says veiled legal threats against the Government’s plans for plain packaging on cigarettes by the tobacco industry is just the tip of a litigious iceberg that US interests will launch under a new trade deal being negotiated.

New Zealand First leader and Foreign Affairs spokesperson Rt Hon Winston Peters says the lawsuit-floodgates could open when the Government ratifies the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) later this year.


“This is just the start of what threatens to be an expensive exercise for New Zealand.
“The TPPA is a free trade agreement between nine countries, but revolves around the US. It empowers multinational companies to sue the New Zealand Government whenever the companies believe their interests are being threatened by government policy.

“It locks in successive New Zealand governments who will forever be glancing over their shoulder as foreign barons circle with multi-million dollar lawsuits glinting in their eyes,’’ says Mr Peters.

The Australian Government is currently involved in High Court action with major tobacco companies after being the first country to introduce tough legislation last year.

Tobacco companies based in New Zealand claim plain cigarette packaging infringes their respective intellectual property rights and would see some of their profits go up in smoke.

“New Zealand First supports measures to cut smoking rates amongst Kiwis but committing to a free trade agreement that sets up the Government as a sitting target for multinationals should not play a part.

“Whether plain packaging is a stupid idea or not, this is about our sovereignty,” says Mr Peters.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Patience: Drive Safe

Be patient before passing is the AA's message for drivers this Labour weekend.

"People taking crazy risks to get past other vehicles is one of the most dangerous things on the road,” says AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen.

“The weather is looking good for the long weekend so the roads will be busy. Unfortunately, that also increases the chances of people getting frustrated and trying a risky passing manoeuvre. When they get past, there will probably be more traffic up ahead anyway so it won’t get people there faster.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news