Tag: Don Franks

Labour’s TPP conditions

Article – Don Franks The NZ Labour party has set down self described “non negotiable”conditions for signing the TPP. Labour’s TPP conditions by Don Franks The NZ Labour party has set down self described “non negotiable”conditions for signing the TPP. Leader Andrew Little said his party supported free trade but would not back the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) unless five “non-negotiable bottom lines” were met. They are: * Drug buying agency Pharmac must be protected. * Corporations cannot successfully sue the Government for regulating in the public interest. * New Zealand maintains the right to restrict sales of farm land and housing to non-resident foreigner buyers. * The Treaty of Waitangi must be upheld. * Meaningful gains are made for farmers in tariff reductions and market access. To recap – the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) is a proposed regional free trade deal between 12 countries in the Asia-Pacific region. Negotiations began in 2005 and were supposed to be concluded in 2012, but some issues have been so contentious that agreement has not yet been reached.. Countries involved in the negotiations are New Zealand, Australia, Brunei, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Peru, Singapore, United States, Vietnam, Mexico and Canada. Labour’s latest conditions are designed to placate voters worried about the outcome of the TPP. Described as “non negotiable”, they are certainly extremely flexible. “Pharmac must be protected” – from what and to what...

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Fonterra, treating workers like cattle

Article – Don Franks After several days of rumors, Fonterra today confirmed a series of massive job cuts.Fonterra, treating workers like cattle by Don Franks After several days of rumors, Fonterra today confirmed a series of massive job cuts. Apparently the company held meetings with all finance delivery staff on Wednesday to announce proposed layoffs. Previously, Fonterra refused requests for comment. Fonterra forecast last month that the whole company would undergo a sweeping review in an effort to generate more cash for farmers facing a $4.40 payout this year, after a record $8.40 payout last year. The Ceo said at the time “hundreds” of jobs would go, with support services in the cross-hairs, while production and sales would see a boost. No information on how many new jobs might be created has been released. Instead the firm put out a press release on Thursday saying it had begun “consulting staff on proposals to streamline its business structures”. The release also said the review was aimed at making sure Fonterra is ready to respond to a rapidly changing global environment. “The world is changing and global dairy markets are increasingly volatile. To keep ahead of the game, we need to be more agile, reduce costs and generate value,” it said. Accordingly, the firm was now developing “defined plans that will drive further improvement across the business, allow Fonterra to fund...

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Northland by election: is Winston the Messiah?

Opinion – Don Franks On March 28th, year 193 AD, Roman Emperor Pertinax was assassinated by Praetorian Guards. Who then put the throne up for sale, won by the highest bidder, one Didius Julianus. Northlands March 28 by-election is shaping up to a similar level of … Northland by election: is Winston the Messiah? by Don Franks On March 28th, year 193 AD, Roman Emperor Pertinax was assassinated by Praetorian Guards. Who then put the throne up for sale, won by the highest bidder, one Didius Julianus. Northland’s March 28 by-election is shaping up to a similar level of horse trading. The by-election was prompted by the resignation of Northland MP Mike Sabin, who’d won the seat for National with a majority of more than 9,000 at the September general election. The ballot paper for the by-election shows eleven candidates, but all eyes are on just one of them – NZ First’s Winston Peters. This is because on current polling Peters is in a strong position to take the seat off National, thus removing their majority in the House. Such a removal of National’s majority is seen as a plus for the Parliamentary opposition. It puts National in a difficult position, having to negotiate across the House for every Bill. Over-reverence for parliament among New Zealand leftists means a dig at National is worth almost any compromise. Even unprincipled...

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