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

 


Growing international call for transparency in TPPA

Growing international call for transparency in TPPA negotiations

In the lead-up to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations in Singapore February 22-25, Oxfam New Zealand is calling on the New Zealand Trade Minister, Tim Groser to end the secrecy and make negotiating drafts publicly available. The scope of the TPPA is wide ranging and will be significant for generations to come, not just in New Zealand but particularly for poor and marginalised people in the developing world.

Oxfam’s Executive Director, Barry Coates said, “The lack of transparency around these negotiations is out of step even with practices in the World Trade Organisation and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Citizens and their elected representatives have the right to know what is being decided before it’s too late to do anything about it.”

Oxfam has written to Trade Minister Groser to urge him to make the draft negotiating documents public. At present the text is closely held within a small group of negotiators and their corporate advisers. Oxfam’s letter refers to the Open Letter signed by political leaders and senior MPs from seven countries negotiating the TPPA. Even senior political representatives do not know what is in the text. The letter, available on the website www.tppmpsfortransparency.org, states:

We, the undersigned legislators from countries involved in the negotiation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, call on the Parties to the negotiation to publish the draft text of the Agreement before any final agreement is signed with sufficient time to enable effective legislative scrutiny and public debate.“

If agreed, the TPPA would have long term implications for future rules on trade, investment, intellectual property and copyright, and regulation of international corporations, as well as having implications for a wide range of domestic policies.

“These issues are too important for a few Trade Ministers to decide behind closed doors. In just one of many examples, while New Zealanders may be forced to pay more for medicines, the consequences could be severe for people in extreme poverty in the developing world, who may see their ability to afford life-saving drugs slip away altogether,” Coates said.

The TPPA would establish a new framework for international trade and investment agreements, one that focuses on the rights of foreign investors, while undermining the responsibilities of governments to regulate in the public interest. It would be a new precedent for a multilateral agreement to give foreign companies the right to challenge governments in an international tribunal and demand compensation for lost profits. The TPPA would lay the foundation for other agreements that would vitally affect the interests of people living in poverty around the world.

“Governments need to have the powers to promote poverty reduction, tackle rising inequality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect the environment. But these are likely to be eroded in the TPPA.

“All New Zealanders will be affected, vulnerable communities in the Pacific and across the developing world will be affected, and future generations will be affected. Our elected representatives should be able to know what New Zealand is proposing in these negotiations and debate our positions and our role,” Coates said.

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