Author: Jane Kelsey

Rethinking the trade and investment agenda in turbulent times

Rethinking the trade and investment agenda in turbulent times ‘What an Alternative and Progressive Trade Strategy Should Look Like’, Fale Pasifika, 19-20 October 2018. Professor Jane Kelsey, introductory comments These days I feel depressed, cautiously optimistic, and frustrated at the same time. Depressed because the harm caused by four decades of capitalism unleashed, fostered by a neoliberal regime expanded and locked in through free trade and investment agreements. Poverty, inequality, precarious jobs, decaying infrastructure, social dis-ease surround us Governments and international institutions admit that reality at almost every international meeting I go to. They acknowledge there is a crisis of legitimacy in the current regime, and pepper their speeches with the buzzwords of social inclusion, empowering women and indigenous peoples, reversing inequality and embrace the economic, social and environmental pillars of the sustainable development goals – although they rarely go as far as mentioning climate change. Yet I am cautiously optimistic about the prospects of change, because the forces of creative disruption are breaking the mould, with the caveat that the outcome is not always progressive. We can debate the pros and cons of the UK’s Brexit and Trump’s withdrawal from TPPA, the rewriting of NAFTA, Trump’s tariffs on traditional allies and China alike, but there is no denying or reversing the jolt that has given to the system. Separately from that, the World Trade Organization (WTO) has been...

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Capitulation in TPPA-11 raises fears of more to come – Jane Kelsey

‘The so-called Joint Declaration on Inclusive and Progressive Trade, released by New Zealand, Canada and Chile alongside the signing of the resurrected Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA-11), comes across as a desperate attempt to put a gloss on a profoundly unprogressive deal’, says University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey. ‘They promise to make the TPPA-11 work for women, indigenous peoples, small and medium enterprises, workers, the environment. Yet those constituencies have repeatedly made it clear that the deal itself is anathema to their interests – most recently in a statement from fifty women’s organisations across ten of the eleven...

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Te Tiriti O Waitangi, Tino Rangatiratanga And The TPPA – Jane Kelsey

The state of play with TPPA The original Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement was signed by the 12 negotiating parties in Auckland on 4 February 2016, in the face of a massive protest led by tangata whenua. Japan and NZ completed their domestic processes to ratify (adopt) the original agreement during 2016. In January 2017 US President Trump withdrew the US’s participation from the TPPA. The 11 remaining countries met 7 times in 2017 to rescue the TPPA minus the US. Each country tabled a list of provisions in the TPPA that it wanted removed or suspended. Apparently, NZ under the...

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