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

 

Why is Labour supporting investment rules in WTO?

10 December 2017

For immediate release

If Labour wants to ‘tame globalised capital’ why is it supporting investment rules in WTO?

Last week Trade Minister David Parker said “it’s not fair that we subjugate ourselves to the interests of the one per cent” and promised to tame the “excesses of globalised capital”.

‘Today, we learned the new government has added New Zealand’s name to a proposal designed to lead to foreign investment rules in the WTO at this week’s ministerial meeting in Argentina,’ said Auckland University Professor Jane Kelsey, who is in Buenos Aires to speak at an academic conference associated with the WTO ministerial.

The Proposed Ministerial Statement on Investment Facilitation for Development was released this morning on behalf of 37 countries, including China, Japan, Russia and the EU. It endorses a draft Ministerial Decision that would establish a Working Group on Investment Facilitation with a mandate to begin building an investment framework in the WTO.

Professor Kelsey calls it ‘deeply ironic that the draft statement calls on governments “to create a more transparent, efficient, and predictable environment for facilitating cross-border investment”. “Transparent, efficient, and predictable” rules to facilitate foreign investment are code for the kind of constraints on investment regimes that the Labour-led government criticised in the TPPA, as it called for greater flexibility.’

‘Appeals in the draft statement to seemingly benign notions of “investment facilitation” to promote “development” are a Trojan Horse for breaking the blockage on investment negotiations in the WTO’.

Moves in 1996, 2001 and 2003 to get negotiations on foreign investment rules in the WTO failed, with opponents insisting that the WTO remains within its mandate on trade.

The current proposal eschews the inclusion of market access, investor protection and ISDS, found in agreements like the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. But Professor Kelsey warns that they are bound to re-appear once investment is on the WTO agenda, as a number of proponents are deeply wedded to the existing model.

‘The new government has promised consultation on a progressive new agenda for trade and investment. Here we have another example of it pre-empting decisions on how New Zealand should approach these issues in the international arena’.

Noting that New Zealand First and the Greens have voiced stronger opposition than Labour to such investment rules, Professor Kelsey called on them to pressure their coalition partner to withdraw New Zealand’s name from this proposal.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Simon Bridges: National Leak Inquiry Points To Jami-Lee Ross

John Billington QC has independently assessed the investigation report. It is his opinion that on the balance of probabilities the evidence establishes that Jami-Lee Ross was the person who leaked the expenses and the sender of the text message.

I accept both the investigation report and the opinion of Mr Billington.

Earlier today I visited Jami-Lee Ross with Paula Bennett and explained to him the report and the opinion of Mr Billington and gave him an opportunity to respond. I was not satisfied with his explanation. More>>

 

New Hager Investigation: War Crimes, Sexual Assaults And Coverups In Armed Forces

A string of current and ex-New Zealand Defence Force staff have contacted Hager since the book he co-authored with Jon Stephenson – Hit & Run – was published in March 2017... More>>

ALSO:

Israel's Anti-Boycott Law: NZ Activists Fined Over Lorde Cancellation Raise $12k For Charity

New Zealand activists being fined in Israel for urging pop singer Lorde to cancel her concert have raised more than $12,000 for a Palestinian charity. More>>

ALSO:

NZEI: Teacher Shortage Plan Falls Short

NZEI Te Riu Roa has welcomed the Government's announcement of new initiatives to address the growing teacher shortage, but says teaching must become a sustainable career choice if there is to be a long-term solution… More>>

ALSO:

New Study: Women’s Refuge Examines Reproductive Coercion In NZ

While some research on reproductive coercion has been undertaken in other countries, like the United States, to date there has not been a comprehensive study of reproductive coercion in New Zealand – making this study a first of its kind. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Govt’s Feeble Response To Loan Sharks

The coalition government’s attempts to minimise the harm done by loan sharks comes nearly 12 years after a major report in 2007 had identified how fringe lenders were aggressively targeting low-income Pacific Island and Maori communities. As that study had found, only 43% of those accessing loan sharks were, at the time, in paid employment. More>>

ALSO:

Sewer Drug Tests: Wastewater Testing To Roll Out Nationally

Testing will be rolled out to 38 sites across the 12 Police districts this month and will capture 80% of New Zealand’s population. Police Commissioner Mike Bush says wastewater testing is crucial to Police’s understanding of drug consumption in our communities. More>>

ALSO:

Four Stood Down: Two Probes Into Police Trainees Are Criminal Investigations

Two of the four investigations into trainee police over claims of misconduct are criminal investigations, the Police College training manager says. More>>

ALSO:

Earthquake Claims: One Stop Shop Launched

The Greater Christchurch Claims Resolution Service... will provide independent case management to bring together fast tracked claims handling, specialist engineering support, psychosocial support, and legal expertise to help resolve claims. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels