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


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Corrections Corrected: Supreme Court Rules On Release Dates

Corrections has always followed the lawful rulings of the Court in its calculation of sentence release dates. On four previous occasions, the Court of Appeal had upheld Corrections’ practices in calculating pre-sentence detention. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>


Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news