Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


NZ left in the dark in free trade swindle

Alliance Party media release
Thursday 6 April 2006

Alliance says New Zealanders have been left in the dark in free trade swindle

The Alliance Party says the free trade deal with China announced today will go down in history as a con-job of monumental proportions, and a cynical victory of cash over principles.

Alliance Party co-leader Len Richards says the Labour Government announcement that free trade with China is going ahead shows a stunning disregard for democracy.

Mr Richards says behind the photo opportunities and PR spin, lies some ugly realities that will soon hit home for the New Zealand public.

"Free trade with China means being integrated economically with a police state where labour exploitation and environmental degradation are the norm."

Mr Richards says the basis of free trade agreements are totally undemocratic, had not been explained to the public, and served to lock in the worst features of global capitalism.

"Since the Prime Minister admits we cannot compete with Chinese wage rates, we will have to do something other than what they are doing. But what? China is rapidly becoming the world's leading manufacturer of all manner of consumer goods. What is left for New Zealand to do?"

He says the economic system driving free trade will end in social chaos, inequality, exploitation and the irreversible destruction of the global environment.

"The people of New Zealand are not being told the truth."

He says the whole free trade process has taken place behind closed doors.

"It is fascinating how the free-market establishment and business media in New Zealand, who were previously outraged by actions such as the Tianamen Square massacre, have transformed into cheerleaders of the Chinese State."

Mr Richards called on the New Zealand trade union movement to speak out about the free trade deal, since independent unions in China were illegal and workers were unable to organize to defend their interests.

"New Zealand workers face further attacks on their jobs, wages and conditions under a free trade agreement with China."

He says the Alliance supports international trade as part of a fair trade system that promoted human rights, environmental sustainability and social equality.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Werewolf: What Does Winston Peters Want His Legacy To Be?

A lot of people in New Zealand seem to resent Winston Peters and the power that he appears to have. “Appears” being the operative word. In reality, Peters will have power only up to the point that he uses it.

By next week, he’ll have become just another junior player in an MMP governing arrangement, battling to hold onto the gains he was promised. More>>


Rising Toll: Road Safety Needs To Be A Higher Priority

Official advice released to the Green Party under the Official Information Act shows that the previous National Government dismissed an option to make road safety its most important transport priority after being told the road toll was rising. More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>


Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>


Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>


Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>


Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>




Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election