28 February: AFTINET has raised the alarm over the possibility that British corporations will gain the right to sue the Australian Government if the UK is granted membership in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).
24 February: In an opinion article in The Guardian, AFTINET Convenor Dr Patricia Ranald has explained how the global trade system is failing to put public health before profit, and what the World Trade Organisation (WTO) must do to address global inequity in access to pandemic medicines
23 February, 2022: Ahead of key meetings at the World Trade Organisation (WTO), AFTINET has joined more than 200 civil society organisations around the world in an open letter calling on the WTO to ensure that any waiver on patent monopolies goes beyond COVID19 vaccines to include treatments and tests.
February 22, 2022 Media Release: The World Trade Organisations (WTO) this week must seize the opportunity to address the global inequity in COVID19 vaccines, tests and treatments, say vaccine equity advocates. While in Australia debate has focused on the availability of free rapid antigen tests (RATs), globally there is inequitable global access to tests, vaccines and treatments that are critical to protecting people from COVID-19.
21 February, 2021: New research from Public Citizen reveals that Pfizer is roadblocking access to COVID19 treatments by filing patent applications in sixty-one countries for nirmatrelvir, a key component of its new COVID19 therapeutic drug, Paxlovid.
February 20, 2022: After a fierce debate, prompted by farmers’ organisations, the Philippines Senate adjourned in February without endorsing the ratification of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) trade agreement between Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, South Korea and the 10 ASEAN countries.
16 February, 2022: Two investigative reports from the British Medical Journal and Amnesty International have exposed how the pharmaceutical industry is working to undermine global efforts to tackle vaccine equity.
February 15, 2022: Environmental defenders in Thailand have slammed a decision by the Thai Government to reinstate formerly revoked mining licenses following a lengthy legal battle in an international arbitration tribunal, paving the way for Australian mining company Kingsgate Consolidated to begin operations in the Chatree gold mine.
February 14, 2022: The Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs Defence and Trade (JSFADT) held an inquiry into he expansion of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific partnership (CPTPP) in 2021, and the committee report was released on February 10, 2022.
The government has a majority on this committee, which makes general investigations into trade issues. The UK, China and Taiwan applied in that order in 2020 to join the CPTPP, and their applications will be considered by the eight of the eleven governments that have ratified the agreement.
The report recommends that Australia support the applications of the UK and Taiwan, but places conditions on support for China’s accession.
February 9, 2022: Following the announcement of a free trade deal between Australia and the UK late last year, the text has been tabled in Parliament and a parliamentary inquiry into the agreement has been launched. The inquiry will allow civil society organisations to make submissions concerning the potential impacts of the agreement.