Pressure is on to finish PACER-plus negotiations
March 1, 2017: Australia and New Zealand are exerting more pressure to conclude the PACER-plus negotiations with Pacific Island nations, which have been ongoing for eight years, says PANG campaigner Adam Wolfenden.
He argues that despite the pressure to finish negotiations Australia and New Zealand “don’t seem to be shifting” their position to accomodate the needs of countries like Fiji, who are concerned about “their ability to protect and nurture their infant industries.”
Given that Papua New Guinea has withdrawn from negotiations and Fiji may also refuse to sign on, there’s now a possibility that a deal could go ahead without the two largest Pacific island economies.
During a recent visit to to Fiji, Australian Assistant Trade Minister Keith Pitt confirmed that Australia’s priority was to conclude negotiations - with or without Fiji.