Australian Trade Minister Robb announced in December 2013 that the main elements of the Korea-Australia free trade agreement had been settled between the two governments.
The agreement includes investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS), a controversial mechanism which gives foreign investors the right to sue governments. The previous Labor government had a policy against including ISDS in trade agreements and had been maintaining this position since 2008 when the negotiations with Korea began.
AFTINET opposes including ISDS in any trade agreement as it would reduce the ability of governments to regulate in the public interest.
For more details, see AFTINET convener Dr Patricia Ranald’s analysis Campaign against inclusion of ISDS in the Korea-Australia agreement, and AFTINET's analysis of the text of the agreement which confirms that these "safeguards" have been ineffective in the past.
AFTINET presented the petition Stop foreign investors suing our governments – reject Korea trade deal to the Trade Minister's office in Canberra in early February.