Forum on TPP, US and Australian Elections today 12:30 PM

Media Release, April 20, 2016: Expert speakers from the US, Canada and Australia will today discuss the politics and prospects of the Trans-Pacific trade deal in the US and Australia at a public forum to be held from 12:30 - 2 PM at the Macquarie Room at New South Wales Parliament House.

Dr Patricia Ranald, AFTINET Convener, said that the many critical submissions to the current TPP Parliamentary Inquiry showed strong community opposition to the TPP’s extension of global corporate rights at the expense of people’s rights. The revelations of corporate tax evasion and corruption in the Panama papers show that governments need more, not less, capacity to regulate global corporations in the public interest. Bipartisan opposition to the TPP in the US meant that Australia would be foolish to rush to ratify the TPP when the U.S. Congress will not even consider it until after the November presidential election.

Lori Wallach from US Public Citizen will analyse the US political process by video.

Jon Edwards, MSF Advocacy Manager said that MSF had declared the TPP the worst trade deal ever in extending pharmaceutical companies monopolies over medicines, including the latest expensive biologic medicines. MSF opposed TPP ratification because it would delay access to lower priced medicines for millions of people in TPP countries.

Sarah Agar, CHOICE Policy and Campaigns Advisor said that the TPP Investor-State Dispute Process would give foreign corporations the right to bypass Australian courts and sue the Australian government in international tribunals over future changes to food labelling and other policies that promote the public interest. CHOICE could not support this process.

Dr Jim Stanford from McMaster University in Canada, and former union economist said that the TPP would contribute to a global race to the bottom on workers’ rights and living standards. A sharp debate over TPP in the recent Canadian federal election proved that popular concern over one-sided trade deals can be politically potent.

Download the full media release here