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

 


FTA steals a march on NZ and US on agriculture in TPPA

Australia-Japan FTA steals a march on NZ and US on agriculture in TPPA


‘Australia appears to have stolen a march on New Zealand and other parties to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement by concluding its longstanding negotiations for a free trade agreement with Japan overnight’, according to Professor Jane Kelsey, who maintains a close watch on Japan’s TPPA strategy.

There is scant detail and no text will be available for at least another month – potentially after the TPPA ministers are expected to convene on either side of their APEC meeting in China on 17-18 May.

Summary information released by Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade suggests Australia has settled for far less on agriculture than is being demanded of Japan in the TPPA. It may also have declined to include the controversial investor-state dispute settlement mechanism in the agreement.

The deal on dairy seems to involve immediate tariff-free access for protein concentrates and casein and for a greater quantity of Australian cheddar cheese, with future opportunities for frozen yoghurt and ice-cream.

The concessions, at least on cheese, appear to take the form of tariff rate quotas available only to Australia.

The deal will give Australia priority access to what Japan is prepared to offer on agriculture in the twelve-party negotiations.

Professor Kelsey predicts ‘the US will not be impressed. President Obama is due to visit Japan from 23 to 25 April, where he was hoping to pen a deal. But the talks on agriculture remain heavily bogged down, with the US demanding much more than Japan is prepared to give’.

‘Not only has Australia got first dibs on what Japan is prepared to offer – it appears to have settled for a much lower standard than the US has demanded.’

‘If the US is unhappy, New Zealand should be distraught. Trade Minister Groser has insisted there must be comprehensive liberalisation of all agricultural products – and he has consistently said he will walk away if that is not achieved’, Kelsey observed.

‘The TPPA, if it happens, will be a deal brokered by and for the big players. Now Australia has abandoned New Zealand as well.’

‘It is time Tim Groser faced reality. New Zealand has nothing to bargain with and no political leverage. The risks to regulatory sovereignty from the TPPA are simply too high, and the prospects for economic benefits exceedingly low.’

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Patience: Drive Safe

Be patient before passing is the AA's message for drivers this Labour weekend.

"People taking crazy risks to get past other vehicles is one of the most dangerous things on the road,” says AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen.

“The weather is looking good for the long weekend so the roads will be busy. Unfortunately, that also increases the chances of people getting frustrated and trying a risky passing manoeuvre. When they get past, there will probably be more traffic up ahead anyway so it won’t get people there faster.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news