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

 


Free trade deals delay public health initiative

19 February, 2013

Free trade deals delay public health initiative

The positive health initiative of introducing plain packaging for cigarettes is being undone by the Government’s free trade obsession, Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said today.

New Zealand will follow Australia and legislate to allow for mandatory plain packaging of tobacco products. The regulations to implement the law will not be activated until the conclusion of cases filed under World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules against Australia for its plain packaging regime.

“Plain packaging is a great public health initiative as it stops tobacco companies getting around the law to stop them advertising,” said Mr Hague.

“Their product kills – and the Government should do all it can to stop them ensnaring New Zealanders into this costly and deadly habit.

“The decision to wait until legal cases taken against Australia are concluded is however very disappointing.

“Legislation that could save lives is being postponed because of the risk of New Zealand being sued due to free trade agreements we have signed in the past.”

The Green Party is also concerned about the impact the investor-state dispute procedure proposed in the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) would have on New Zealand’s ability to protect the health of its citizens. Australia has resisted the investor-state dispute procedure being included during its negotiations on the TPP.

“Big tobacco is using existing trade rules against Australia.” Mr Hague said.

“Signing up to the investor state dispute resolution parts of the TPP will further expose New Zealand to the risk of being sued by multi-national corporations seeking to influence our public health policies.

“The Key Government needs to protect the health of its citizens and should therefore refuse to sign agreements that constrain New Zealand’s right to legislate for the sake of our health and environment.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Greens: Oil Drilling Face-Off With Labour

The plan is the second component of the Party’s environmental priority this election: Rivers clean enough to swim in again, and beaches safe from oil spills.

The Green Party loves New Zealand and will create a cleaner environment where our beaches remain open for swimming, not closed for oil spills.

The key policy points in the Green Party’s plan to protect our beaches from oil spills are to:
1. Prohibit deep sea oil drilling;
2. Implement compulsory shipping lanes for coastal shipping;
3. Build Maritime New Zealand’s oil spill response capability; and
4. Introduce a stronger legal framework so that when accidents do happen, the New Zealand taxpayer does not have to pay for the clean-up. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Minister Told Of FBI Investigation, Says INZ: Coleman Must Quit Or Be Sacked Over Dotcom Case - Harré

Immigration New Zealand has done the right thing in distancing itself from Jonathan Coleman’s claims that ministers were not aware of FBI involvement in Kim Dotcom’s residency application, says the Internet Party. More>>

ALSO:

Valedictory Season: Maori Party Founders Say Goodbye

Two major Maori MPs gave there farewell speeches to Parliament Thursday outlining their history, experiences, triumphs and regrets. More>>

ALSO:

Resignation Not Accepted: Transport Minister Breaches Aviation Security Rules

"Running late for a plane at Christchurch Airport, I without thought breached airport and airline security rules by entering the gate lounge through a door usually used for exit only..." More>>

ALSO:

TAIC Report: Urgent Recommendations After Melling Rail Accident

The Transport Accident Investigation Commission has made four urgent recommendations to KiwiRail following the accident two months ago (27 May) when a Matangi passenger train collided with a stop block at Melling Station, Lower Hutt. More>>

ALSO:

Red Tape: Local Regulations Go Under Microscope

The Government says it is accepting nearly all of the recommendations the Productivity Commission has made on ways to improve local regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Spending Questions: Claudette Hauiti To Step Aside At Election

National Party President Peter Goodfellow confirms that he has received notification from List MP Claudette Hauiti that she plans to step aside at the 20 September election. More>>

ALSO:

EPA: Board Of Inquiry Rejects Basin Flyover By Majority Of 3 To 1

The independent Board of Inquiry delegated to decide on the Basin Bridge Proposal has, by a majority decision (3 to 1), cancelled the Transport Agency’s Notice of Requirement and declined its resource consent applications for the construction, operation and maintenance of a flyover on State Highway 1 in Wellington City... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news