Author: Edward Miller

Activists mobilise at Leesburg round from 6-15 September

At this week’s round, US anti-TPP campaigners made their mark again. A Rainforest Action Network blockade stopped negotiators entering the resort where talks were held, with a 75-foot high banner saying ‘Free Trade My Ass: Flush the TPP’ suspended by inflated giant buttocks. 30+ negotiators were taken on a nightime bus tour of Washington’s sights and a reception at the Teamsters union penthouse with US politicians critical of TPPA. OpenMedia set up a great citizens’ comment stream at http://openmedianow.net/tppconsole/ where thousands took...

Read More

Powerplays: TPPA v ASEAN-plus-six FTA

The super-power contest is heating up. Negotiations for a competing mega-FTA between 10 ASEAN countries and China, India, Korea, Japan, Australia and New Zealand have just been launched. China is in and the US is not! NZ wants to keep a foot in each camp. Trade Minister Tim Groser is putting his eggs in the TPPA basket, but states ‘if TPP were to start to weaken, and we will fight that as hard as we can, my theory would be that [the ASEAN+6] FTA will help us’. China, which it is hosting APEC in 2014, will have different...

Read More

TPPA talks bogged down, high risk of trade offs

At APEC in 2011 the political leaders of TPPA countries told negotiators to finish the deal by the end of 2012. Now John Key says a TPP won’t be signed in 2012 and a 2013 deal was only ‘possible’. At APEC last week the TPP trade ministers reported ‘significant narrowing of gaps’ in some areas, and slower progress in others! The political leaders told negotiators ‘to direct their energies at promptly finding pragmatic, creative, flexible, and mutually-acceptable solutions to the remaining issues under negotiation.’ That suggests high-risk political tradeoffs simply to make a...

Read More