September 12, 2017: RCEP Ministers met last week in Manila to assess progress in the negotiations. Filipino community groups met with negotiators and organised forums and protests.
Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)
Civil society groups including People Over Profit, Health Alliance for Democracy (HEAD) and Ibon Foundation met with Philippine trade officials on September 4 to express their strong opposition to the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), ahead of the 5th ministerial talks in Manila on September 10.
This forum will examine how trade agreements like TiSA, the TPP and the RCEP promote deregulation, commercialisation and privatisation of services ranging from health, education and childcare, aged care and disability care to public transport, energy and water. It will also discuss strategies to defeat them.
July 24, 2017: Media Alert: “The Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network strongly supports the community mobilisation taking place in India on July 24 to challenge TPP-like corporate proposals in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership,” said AFTINET Convenor Dr Patricia Ranald today.
“Concerted campaigning by public health, trade union and environmental organisations stopped the Trans-Pacific Partnership, but the same agenda for corporate powers to sue governments and stronger monopolies on medicines and seeds is emerging in the RCEP.
July 25, 2017: Media Release: The Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network strongly supports the community protests in Hyderabad that challenged TPP-like proposals in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership 19th round of negotiations this week,” said AFTINET Convenor Dr Patricia Ranald today.
August 3, 2017: Economist Smitha Francis’ article in the Indian journal Business Today has strongly criticised India’s continuing participation in the RCEP negotiations because of the challenge to India’s sovereignty from the proposed Investor-State Disputes Settlement process.
July 30, 2017: The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership talks in Hyderabad, India, ended on Friday July 28 under a shroud of secrecy, but serious differences remain on medicines, copyright, e-commerce, government procurement, and investor rights to sue governments .
July 28, 2017: According to The Hindu, India is being pressed in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership talks in Hyderabad to make binding commitments to open up its government procurement sector - by China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, and two ASEAN bloc members, Singapore and Malaysia.
July 27, 2017: Members of community groups who attended brief consultations with negotiators at the RCEP talks in Hyderabad said that the refusal to disclose details of proposals meant the consultations were inadequate and demanded publication of negotiating texts.
July 26, 2017: Women's organisations, including small farmers and informal workers, were prominent in RCEP protests held in Hyderabad this week. The Hindu reports that increased global corporate rights could have severe impacts on women. For example, women farmers use seeds saved from the previous harvest. Patenting of seeds by global companies would price them out of reach.