China FTA

Senior bureaucrat confirms no China FTA testing for local workers

September 9, 2015: The Prime Minister's claim in Parliament that  the China FTA allows " no possibility of placing any foreigner in an Australian job without labour market testing"  was flatly contradicted by the evidence of a senior officer from  Department of Immigration and Border Protection to the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties on September 7 .

Shorten criticism of China FTA backed by academics

September 3, 2015: the Sydney Morning Herald reports that ALP Opposition Leader Bill Shorten is sticking to his criticism that China FTA does not require testing for local workers for projects over $150 million, despite government denials. Associate Prof Stuart Rosewarne and migration law expert Joanne Howe writing in The Drum agree with this criticism after analysing both the text of the agreement and the government’s response.

Shenhua mine example shows devil in the detail of the China Free Trade Agreement

August 5, 2015 Dr Patricia Ranald's oped in the Sydney Morning Herald

With public hearings for the Parliamentary Inquiry into the China Free Trade Agreement under way, the Shenhua Watermark coal mine on the Liverpool Plains, in north-west NSW, may provide a test case for some of the key clauses in the agreement on governments' rights to regulate mining projects for environmental reasons and on the employment of temporary overseas workers on such projects.

Read more here

AFTINET submission to China FTA Parliamentary Inquiries

The AFTINET submission to the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties critcises the unprecedented expansion of the use of temporary labour in a trade agreement, despite government denials. It also criticises the  the inclusion of Investor rights to sue governments (ISDS) and the lack of commitment by either government to enforceable labour rights and environmental standards. AFTINET has made a similar submission to the Senate Inquiry. See copy here.


TPP Protest at ALP Conference, Melbourne on July 24 as TPP negotiators meet in Hawaii

MEDIA RELEASE, July 23, 2015

TPP Protest at ALP Conference, Melbourne on July 24 as TPP negotiators meet in Hawaii for possible shameful trade-offs

“Community groups are rallying in the Melbourne winter at 8 am on Friday July 24 outside the ALP conference at the Melbourne Convention Centre to ask the ALP to reject bad trade deals like the China FTA and the TPP. On the same day TPP negotiators begin their secret meeting in the luxury beach resort of Maui in Hawaii, with TPP Trade Ministers scheduled to meet there from July 28-31 to try to finish the deal,” Dr Patricia Ranald, Coordinator of the Australian Fair Trade and investment Network said today.