Listen to the voices of Kiwis on the TPPA
15 February 2016
For Immediate Release
It’s Our Future has today issued a challenge to the Parliamentary Committee on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) to respect democratic process.
The Parliamentary Select Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade has announced that submissions will close on Friday 11th March for its Inquiry on the TPPA.
Barry Coates, spokesperson for It’s Our Future, the organising network on the TPPA campaign, said: “This is a complex international agreement with huge potential impacts across New Zealand economy, environment, society and democratic system. Public opinion polling shows that a majority of Kiwis oppose the TPPA and many citizens and organisations have evidence to submit. More time is needed for submissions.”
“There are active TPPA campaign groups in centres across New Zealand, and many people with strongly held views will want to have a chance to make their arguments in person. We urge the Committee to conduct hearings across the country, beyond the four main centres, to respect the democratic process and provide the right for people to give oral evidence.”
“The National Interest Analysis represented the government’s views on the TPPA, but ignored other evidence. This one-sided ‘selling’ of the TPPA is an abuse of the democratic process. The Committee should receive and incorporate into their report the growing volume of credible research and analysis that shows the TPPA is not in New Zealand’s interests.”
“There is growing concern over the politicisation of our Parliamentary processes, which are all too often a fig leaf to justify the government’s position. We have today called on the Committee Chair and members to undertake their duty to provide full and objective scrutiny of the TPPA, setting aside political tribalism to assess the evidence with integrity and impartiality,” concluded Coates.