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TPPA is a bad idea

TPPA is a bad idea

“Currently New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Brunei, Vietnam, the USA, Japan, Malaysia, Canada, and Mexico are still negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. Officially talks finished last August, but the reality is that they keep on going, with the next round due to take place in December,” John Ring, Democrats for Social Credit spokesman on Foreign Affairs and candidate for Wigram, told a Christchurch meeting today.

“One of the matters that was dealt with relatively early (in 2009) was the issue of how physical trade was to be dealt with. New Zealand and Australia wanted one schedule, so all participating countries would agree to the same things, but the USA said many of these countries already had free trade deals with each other, so existing deals should remain, but those countries that didn't already have trade deals with each other should negotiate bilateral deals. The USA won on that point.

“Some people have criticised Japan and Australia for doing a bilateral deal outside the TPPA, but this was in accordance with the basic strategy that had been agreed to, except that they did it outside the TPPA, so if the full TPPA is never agreed to, the agreement between Japan and Australia will still stand.

“One consequence of this approach to negotiations is that if Japan and the United States reach an agreement on trade in dairy products, this will have no effect on negotiations about dairy products between New Zealand and the United States or between New Zealand and Japan. The Prime Minister doesn't seem to be aware of that.

”Early last year the United Stated and New Zealand were almost in agreement about physical trade. The one area on which they could not agree was dairy, and that doesn't seem to have changed since then.

“However, the Transpacific Partnership Agreement has 29 chapters, only four of which have anything to do with physical trade. Topics covered in other chapters include such things as investment, regulatory coherence, intellectual property, and state – owned enterprises.

“Collectively, these other provisions would, if the agreement is adopted, tend to reduce our economic performance, reduce the options available for handling any crisis, and slow down the government's response to crises such as the recent earthquakes.

“Overall, the agreement is a bad idea and should be rejected,” said Mr Ring.


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