Thursday April 4, 2019: A group of seven Special Rapporteurs in the United Nations system have told another UN body – the UN Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) - that Investor-State Dispute Settlement in trade agreements need systemic reform, not only procedural improvements.
April 3, 2019: Over three hundred labour unions, consumer advocates and environmental organizations from all continents sent a letter on April 1, 2019, to World Trade Organization member nations expressing a "profound and urgent opposition" to talks that would establish new rules on digital trade.
April 1, 2019: The Joint Standing Committee on Treaties has produced Report 185 recommending that Australia accede to the revised WTO Procurement Agreement (GPA). There is no implementing legislation because the only required legislation for accession was the Government Procurement (Judicial Review) Act which was passed in October 2018 with other implementing legislation for the TPP 11.
Thursday March 28, 2019: French trade officials speaking in Paris have laid out a series of priorities for climate negotiations including getting the Paris agreement "fully implemented", raising national ambitions for carbon cuts and getting more ambitious commitments from the signatories by 2020. This policy will be applied in European Union negotiations with Australia for a free trade agreement.
Tuesday, March 26, 2019: “The Australia-Hong Kong Free Trade Agreement and separate Investment Agreement signed today still give special rights to foreign investors to bypass national courts and sue governments for millions of dollars in international tribunals if they can argue that a change in law or policy would harm their investment, known as Investor-State
Monday March 25, 2019: The Australian reports that Federal Labor Trade Spokesperson Jason Clare has confirmed that Labor in government would seek to remove Investor-State Dispute Settlement clauses from the Peru and Indonesia FTAs, which the Morrison government has signed but not ratified.
Friday March 22, 2019: “It has taken a second FOI case and another two years to reveal that Australian taxpayers were only awarded half of the costs of defending Australia’s tobacco plain packaging laws against tobacco giant Philip Morris in March 2017.
Thursday, March 21, 2019: The EU-Korea FTA came into force back in 2011, the first of the “new generation” trade agreements made by the EU. While the corporates have had a huge success with the deal, its promise to improve workers' rights has not been delivered.