Press Release – Green Party

The Green Party joined with dozens of current and former legislators in calling for New Zealands trade negotiators to beware of the potential for the United States Government to apply the process of certification to the Trans-Pacific Partnership …15 May 2015

Greens voice concern regarding US bullying over TPPA
The Green Party joined with dozens of current and former legislators in calling for New Zealand’s trade negotiators to beware of the potential for the United States Government to apply the process of ‘certification’ to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).

The process of certification allows the US Government to not enact a trade agreement that it has signed until after it is satisfied the other countries have changed their own laws, in line with US interpretation of the treaty. Despite recent setbacks for proponents of the TPPA in the United States senate the TPPA is still a possibility and if enacted the United States will push other countries involved in this deal to accept their rules.

“The Green Party shares the very real concern from current and former legislators over both the TPPA and the US process of certification,” Green Party trade spokesperson James Shaw said today.

“Trade Minister Tim Groser needs to explain what he and the National Government are doing to protect New Zealand’s interests from the United States Government using certification of the TPPA to change our laws to suit their interests.

“Our domestic laws and regulations shouldn’t be used as bargaining chips in negotiations over the TPPA.

“The public of New Zealand, who will be directly affected by the TPPA, also deserve the opportunity to scrutinise and critique the TPPA before it is signed.

“Making matters worse is the possibility that other countries may be able to seek changes to our laws in order to suit corporate interests before the TPPA agreement is even signed.”

Currently the countries involved in the TPPA have agreed that the text for the agreement will not be released until negotiations conclude. All documents, other than the text, will then be held in confidence until four years after the agreement comes into force.

“The TPPA includes investor state provisions that will allow any one of the eleven other signatories provisions or multinational corporations that reside in their territories to sue New Zealand for any perceived breaches.

“The TPPA will also restrict the ability of future governments to legislate for the good of public health and the environment.

“Future governments that wish to push for tougher environmental legislation in order to combat climate change shouldn’t be hamstrung by the desire of the Key Government and trade officials to push through the TPPA at any cost,” Mr Shaw said.

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