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Kiwis must reject TPPA - Democrats for Social Credit

Media Release

Monday 7 October 2013

Kiwis must reject TPPA

The Transpacific Partnership Agreement, between New Zealand, Australia, the USA, Singapore, Chile, Brunei, Vietnam, Malaysia, Mexico, Canada, Peru, and Japan appears to be in its final stages of negotiations” says John Ring, Foreign Affairs Spokesman for New Zealand Democrats for Social Credit.

”Until this month, negotiations have been conducted by professional negotiators, but there will be attempts at APEC to achieve political solutions on matters that have not been resolved.  That is when political leaders, who generally don’t know as much about the issues as the negotiators do, try making trade – offs with each other.

“The agreement will contain a provision on Investor – State Dispute Settlement allowing foreign corporations to sue governments in ad hoc tribunals.  The latest United Nations Investment Report, put out by UNCTAD, which usually regards transnational corporations as a good thing, is critical of ISDS, so agreeing to it now is reckless behaviour.

“The agreement is secret, and will be for four years after it is signed, during which time they will probably expect more countries to sign up to it, which is a completely bizarre way of doing any sort of deal.

“So far neither the USA nor NZ has changed its position on access to the USA for NZ dairy products, and the agreement says nothing about agricultural subsidies (except if a state – owned enterprise is receiving the subsidy, and there isn’t even agreement on that.)

“Since Japan joined the talks, a lot of US businesses want the agreement to ban Quantitative Easing, as they say Japan has used that to get a lower exchange rate and take jobs off Americans.  This position has gained a lot of support in Congress, so it will probably have to be included in the agreement to get it past Congress, even though the USA has been doing the same thing and banning it might wreck the US economy.

“Provisions on intellectual property are likely to require Pharmac to operate similarly to Australia’s Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, which would double the cost of pharmaceuticals here, and it may be stricter than that. (Australian pharmaceutical prices are still cheaper than in the USA).

“By granting monopolies to patent and copyright holders for longer periods, the intellectual property provisions will also slow economic development, so the Pacific will probably end up lagging behind other regions, such as the Indian Ocean.

“It will also ban capital controls and transaction taxes.

“The whole agreement is a piece of nonsense that should be rejected out of hand,” concluded Mr Ring.


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