Key, Obama to make TPP push

Article – NZN New Zealand and the US are at loggerheads over some points in the TPP trade deal, but both countries’ leaders are pushing for it to be finalised.20 November 2012 Prime Minister John Key will team up with United States President Barack Obama in Cambodia on Tuesday morning in a push to seal a major trade deal with Asian leaders. The pair are attending the East Asia Summit alongside government heads from Russia, Australia, China, Cambodia and Japan, and many attendees will take part in a 90-minute meeting on Tuesday morning to discuss the 11-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal, which is Mr Key’s prime focus during the visit. The meeting, which is taking place without non-Asian member countries – Mexico, Canada, Chile and Peru – will see Mr Obama launch discussions with the United States’ vision for the deal, with intellectual property regulation a major sticking point. Mr Key will raise New Zealand’s key issue in the deal – agriculture exports – which faces strong opposition from Japan, amid its farmers’ vocal concerns over dropping protectionism. Mr Key remains hopeful TPP negotiations can be concluded in 2013, with a fifteenth round of talks set to take place in New Zealand next month. “These things are always complex – there’s a lot of partners, there’s a lot of moving parts and it will take some political goodwill on...

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NZ-US Council scores ‘own goal’ with laughable TPP Survey

Media release: Professor Jane Kelsey Friday 5 October, 2012 “When cheerleaders commission a survey to support their pet project you can pretty-well guarantee the questions will be skewed to produce a favourable result. But the survey commissioned by the NZ-US Council to show that Kiwi’s support the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement takes the cake”, says University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, a critic of the agreement. “According to the survey 57% of New Zealanders support the proposed TPP, yet 51% of them have never heard of the TPP!” The methodology of the survey is so laughable it does not even warrant a serious rebuttal. “The Council should be shamefaced about trying to present the results as indicating anything of value. A first year student who presented this as a piece of academic work would fail with an E.” Professor Kelsey says the survey has “an air of desperation”. New Zealand will host the next round of TPPA talks in Auckland from 3 to 12 December and its champions are on the back foot. “Many Kiwis are affronted simply by the secrecy that engulfs the TPP negotiations and prevents them knowing what is being done in their name”, said Professor Kelsey. “Others are aware from leaked documents and informed speculation that US-led demands would have a huge negative impact on a wide raft of policies that affect New Zealanders’...

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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...

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