Tag: Jane Kelsey

National government betrays NZers in TPPA deal

Press Release – Jane Kelsey This deal is a travesty of democracy, said Professor Jane Kelsey about the conclusion of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) in Atlanta, USA.National government betrays NZers in TPPA deal ‘This deal is a travesty of democracy’, said Professor Jane Kelsey about the conclusion of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) in Atlanta, USA. ‘The government has ignored, insulted and lied to its citizens.’ ‘Minister Groser has misled New Zealanders. He always knew he was on a hiding to nothing on dairy. I have predicted many times that he would not do as he said and walk away from a lousy deal, but would make claim that there were some intangible future gains from being in the club. That’s exactly what’s happened’. ‘Professor Kelsey urged New Zealanders to ask a simple question: “who gave the Prime Minister and Trade Minister the right to sacrifice our rights to affordable medicine, to regulate foreign investment, to decide our own copyright laws, to set up new SOEs, and whatever else they have agreed to in this secret deal and present it to us as a fait accompli?’’.’ She points out the last major sticking point was monopoly rights for Big Pharma over life saving medicines, showing the TPPA is anything but a ‘free trade’ deal. ‘The compromise language on biologic medicines agreed between the US and Australia is apparently...

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TPPA leak: more worries for Labour

Press Release – Jane Kelsey The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) has given up another secret unprecedented new restrictions on state-owned enterprises (SOEs), says University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey who has monitored the SOE negotiations intensively. …TPPA leak: sweeping restrictions on SOEs, more worries for Labour ‘The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) has given up another secret – unprecedented new restrictions on state-owned enterprises (SOEs)’, says University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey who has monitored the SOE negotiations intensively. ‘Labour needs to add this chapter to its “red lines”.’ The SOE chapter is new. No other agreement, including US FTAs, has such sweeping restrictions on the right of governments to support their SOEs. Wikileaks has just posted a ‘guidance’ document for TPPA ministers on SOE-related issues (https://wikileaks.org/tpp-soe-minister/). Although dated December 2013, Professor Kelsey, who wrote the analysis for Wikileaks, believes it reflects the content of the current text. The rules seem to prevent SOEs from having hybrid public good and commercial roles, as TVNZ did under the Clark Labour government. The TPPA could make it impossible to re-establish a genuine public interest broadcaster that also receives revenue from advertising. Nor could SOEs receive government support, such as subsidies or guarantees, if that adversely affects ‘another country’s interests’. That may spell trouble for KiwiRail, which competes with road operators like Toll Holdings, now owned by Japan Post. It could...

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TPPA leak: Jacobi misleads about protections for NZ

Article – Jane Kelsey On Radio NZs Morning Report Stephen Jacobi said New Zealand would have protections from obligations in the investment chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) that were not part of the text posted by Wikileaks yesterday.TPPA Investment leak: Jacobi misleads about protections for NZ On Radio NZ’s Morning Report Stephen Jacobi said New Zealand would have protections from obligations in the investment chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) that were not part of the text posted by Wikileaks yesterday. ‘That is misleading’, according to Professor Jane Kelsey who specialises in international investment agreements. ‘It is true that the leak did not include annexes of so-called non-conforming measures, so we don’t know what New Zealand has proposed, what has been accepted and what is still under discussion.’ ‘But even if we assume hypothetically that the other eleven parties, including the US, allow New Zealand to include everything the government does, now and in the future, through these annexes (which they will not), that won’t protect us.’ Professor Kelsey points out that these annexes only apply to some of the rules in the chapter. They do not apply to the rules that foreign investors rely most on to sue governments, for example in current investment disputes over Australia’s plain packaging of cigarettes, Quebec’s moratorium on fracking, or the Canadian courts’ denial of a patent for a...

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NZ First Bill throws down the gauntlet over TPPA

Press Release – Jane Kelsey The Fighting Foreign Corporate Control Bill in the name of New Zealand Firsts trade spokesperson Fletcher Tabuteau was drawn from the ballot today.NZ First Bill throws down the gauntlet to National and Labour on foreign investors’ rights to sue in TPPA The Fighting Foreign Corporate Control Bill in the name of New Zealand First’s trade spokesperson Fletcher Tabuteau was drawn from the ballot today. The Bill would stop investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) being included in any future New Zealand agreement, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).* ‘Labour now has to decide whether to support the Bill to select committee and beyond’, said Auckland University Professor Jane Kelsey. ‘Andrew Little has expressed concerns about ISDS, as have others in Labour’s caucus. There is strong opposition to ISDS in the party. If the parliamentary wing fails to take that on board there will be hell to pay.’ While Labour signed up to a version of it in the China deal, the tide has really turned against ISDS in New Zealand and internationally since then. In recent weeks progressive Democrat Senator Elizabeth Warren and the libertarian Cato Institute have both launched swingeing attacks on ISDS. That builds on other recent critiques from Joseph Stiglitz and even The Economist. ‘This Bill could not be more timely’, said Professor Kelsey who has just returned from observing the latest round...

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Lessons for TPPA

Press Release – Jane Kelsey Imagine the New Zealand government does what it thinks is needed to comply with the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). Then US Trade Representative Michael Froman tells Trade Minister Groser, sorry Tim you must rewrite the law …Lessons for TPPA: The US blackmailed Australia to pass a new law overnight Imagine the New Zealand government does what it thinks is needed to comply with the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). Then US Trade Representative Michael Froman tells Trade Minister Groser, “sorry Tim you must rewrite the law to say this, otherwise we won’t let the TPPA come into force.’ Froman sets out the changes he wants, which include provisions the TPPA does not require New Zealand to adopt. Groser agrees. A new Bill is pushed through select committee in twenty-four hours, with three hours notice to make submissions. In other words, the US rewrites New Zealand’s law and bypasses Parliament as a condition of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement coming into force. “This scenario may sound totally fanciful. But this is what happened to Australia in the ‘end game’ of the Australia US Free Trade Agreement in 2004”, according to University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey. A new memorandum published at http://tppnocertification.org/australias-experience/ sets out Australia’s experience, and scathing criticism from the Australian parliamentary library and academics about the assault on democratic processes and Australia’s...

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