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

 


TPPA: Academic Slams Report PM Used To Claim $3.5bn Gains

4 March 2013

For immediate release

Academic Slams Report PM Used To Claim $3.5 Billion Gains to NZ from TPPA

Last December Auckland University law professor Jane Kelsey challenged the Prime Minister’s claim that the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement (TPPA) could boost New Zealand’s economy by $3.5 billion.

‘Governments often wheel out fantastic projections of an El Dorado to rescue agreements that are withering under intense scrutiny. But $3.5 billion was almost double the figures in previous studies on the TPPA, which themselves used implausible assumptions on the upside and ignored all the potential costs’, according to Professor Kelsey.

‘As the next round of negotiations begin in Singapore today, it is time to debunk his claims’.

An Official Information Act request revealed the Prime Minister was citing an unpublished econometric study in November 2012 by the Washington-based Peterson Institute for International Economics that updated earlier versions published by the East West Centre.

Professor Kelsey says ‘the assumptions that underpin the report’s computerised modelling belong on an alien planet’.

It assumes that all eleven countries – including the US – will agree to comprehensive liberalisation, including zero tariffs and all ‘non tariff barriers’ will be removed. Workers who lose their jobs will simply move on to new ones. The entire deal will be tied up by 2013 and approved by national parliaments and implemented immediately – and by Korea and Japan from 2015.

The report ignores any real world downsides – losing part or all of the $5 billion savings from Pharmac over 12 years, the stifling of innovation through extreme US monopoly rights over intellectual property, the economic and social costs of light-handed regulation, legal fees and compensation awards from investment arbitration suits brought by US firms, to name a few.

A review of the report for US consumer group Public Citizen drew similar conclusions: ‘The Institute continues a stalwart tradition of using assumptions-laden computer models to project starry-eyed gains from nearly every NAFTA-style deal it sees. The frequency of those rose-colored projections is matched by the frequency with which they’ve been wrong.’

The best-case scenario, even if all this came true, would benefit every US citizen by 27 cents a day, minus the associated costs. It predicts that ‘a study that uses a computerized model and palette of assumptions to paint a pretty TPP picture will not cause people to forget NAFTA’s nearly two decades of declining wages, rising inequality, and eroding health and environmental standards. Even if the Institute’s picture were more realist than romantic, such costs simply aren’t worth an extra quarter a day.’

Professor Kelsey warned that the stakes in this negotiation are too high to let such hyperbolic projections go unchallenged.

‘If the government is genuinely convinced of the merits of the TPPA, the negotiations have now reached a stage where it can seek and provide independent, credible and comprehensive cost benefit analyses based on various scenarios and open them for public scrutiny and debate.’

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On What John Key Should Be Asking Joe Biden

No doubt, US Vice-President Joe Biden will be updating Prime Minister John Key on the chances of a TPP vote taking place in the ‘ lame duck’ session of Congress that’s held between the November’s election and the inauguration of a new President in January. More>>

ALSO:

Make NZ Make Again: Greens Will Establish A Minister For Manufacturing

The Green Party announced today that it will establish a Minister for Manufacturing in Cabinet, to better represent the interests of manufacturers and ensure they thrive. The Minister will be inside Cabinet and have responsibility for the long-term interests of the manufacturing sector. More>>

ALSO:

Cannabis Party: Treasury Figures On Cost Of Criminalisation

Figures released by Treasury prove the economic viability of The Cannabis Party's policy, while destroying the credibility of police claims about cannabis harms. More>>

ALSO:

Green Party: Investigation Into Mental Health Facilities Shows Disarray

The Health Minister must urgently launch an inquiry into mental health services, after serious issues with the standard of care at mental health and disability facilities around the country were revealed today, the Green Party said. More>>

ALSO:

Apparently He Means 'Years 0-8': Seymour Announces 4th Partnership Schools Application Round

“The continuing growth of this policy reflects the achievement of the eight existing Partnership Schools, and the strong levels of interest educators and community leaders are showing in the Partnership Schools model and what it offers students and their families,” Mr Seymour says. More>>

ALSO:

Trust Directors: Urban Māori Win Case Against Te Ohu Kai Moana

The National Urban Māori Authority (NUMA) and Te Waipareira Trust have succeeded in their claim over a $20 million trust set up for the benefit of urban Māori, meaning all directors of the trust must represent Māori who are not affiliated with an iwi. More>>

New Model: Carbon Tax Could Lower Emissions And Boost Economy

A carbon tax targeting emissions-intensive industries, along with a revamped Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), could boost economic growth, with the extra tax generated used to cut GST from 15 percent to 12.5 percent. More>>

ALSO:

Budget Docs Release: ACC Sought $158mn In Budget 2016, Got $26.4mn

The Accident Compensation Commission requested an extra $158 million in funding for 2016/17 from the government ahead of Budget 2016, but Treasury instead recommended an interim payment of just $26.4 million be funded to tackle demographic changes, papers published by the government show. More>>

ALSO:

Submissions Sought: Māori Party Joins Opposition Housing Inquiry

People who are homeless, those who were once homeless, those working with the homeless and concerned New Zealanders are being asked to share their experiences and solutions to this growing issue with the Cross-Party Homelessness Inquiry. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news