Under the TPPA – Trans-Pacific Partnerships Agreement, big overseas companies will be able to sue the New Zealand government for millions in damages in secretive offshore tribunals, claiming that new laws and regulations have seriously undermined the value of their investments.”The implications of investor state litigation against New Zealand will be far-reaching, unpredictable, unaffordable and inconsistent with public health objectives...” said Public Health Association Chief Executive Warren Lindberg.
This is not scare mongering at all. The Australian government is currently being sued by Philip Morris for its new plain packaging policy under an old international agreement between Australia and Hong Kong. The company behind three South Island gold mines, OceanaGold is taking El Salvador to international arbitration in a bid to force the country to reverse a seven year ban on mining. Lone Pine Resources Inc. is suing the Canadian government for Quebec’s moratorium on fracking. The many claims against Ottawa for damages under the investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism in NAFTA (North America Free Trade Agreement) total billions of dollars.
“Democracy shouldn’t be this hard … The New Zealand public is entitled to information on the TTP proposals; what might be traded off; and exactly what the benefits might be” said Lindberg.The secrecy has sparked a legal challenge jointly filed by Consumer New Zealand, Greenpeace and the New Zealand Nurses Organisation, among others.
In many ways, the TPPA is an attack to New Zealand’s sovereignty, “the Government will be selling its birthright to big businesses if it signs up to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)” says Ngāti Kahungunu.
Listen to law professor Jane Kelsey’s analysis on the fine print of the TPP, from dairy market access to intellectual property rights and regulatory failures…
Now check out the local events against the TPPA this week and join in. For those in Taranaki, please come along to New Plymouth Puke Ariki at 1pm on 15 August 2015, bring people, placards and passion.
Media: Hundreds marched against TPPA (TDN, 17 Aug 2015)
Thousands march against TPP trade agreement (stuff, 15 Aug 2015)