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Kiwi celebs call for release of the TPPA text

29 September 2013

EMBARGOED until 12.01am 1 October 2013

Kiwi celebs call for release of the TPPA text: video & petition

Prominent New Zealand actors, musicians and media commentators are calling for the government to release the draft text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).

The 60 second video* will air for the first time on breakfast television on Tuesday 1 October and then in various formats on electronic and social media.

The video supports an electronic petition for release of the text. The petition will run for six weeks, until 12 November, on www.itsnotright.org.nz.

Participating celebrities are, in order of appearance, Don McGlashan, Jennifer Ward-Lealand, Russell Brown, Michele A’Court, Julia Deans, Moana Maniapoto, Michael Hurst, Willy Jackson, Te Radar and Simon Prast. More have offered to contribute over the six weeks the petition is running.

Media commentator Russell Brown says ‘I’m broadly in favour of multilateral trade agreements, but I don't really regard TPP as trade pact.’

‘In the case of copyright law, we're likely to be dragged back 10 years or more on issues like transient copying. New Zealand's Parliament has generally dealt with these issues in an intelligent, open way - and it simply makes no sense to throw that away’.

Further, ‘I'm troubled by the lack of transparency in TPP negotiations. More so given that it seems likely New Zealand will be obliged by the agreement to roll back legal and regulatory positions that were forged in an open, democratic process.’

In similar vein, performer Michele A’Court says: ‘One of the things I love about democracy is that it is a conversation between us and our government. It doesn’t work if our government doesn’t invite us into the conversation. At that point, it's not democracy. It’s that other thing.’

The video and petition coincide with meetings of the trade ministers and leaders from the twelve TPPA countries over the next week on the margins of the annual APEC summit being held in Bali.

*An embargoed version can be viewed on http://youtu.be/61tDQBKpCdU.


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