On 16 May 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) issued the long-awaited landmark Opinion 2/15 on the EU-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (FTA). According to the CJEU, the agreement falls under the EU’s powers, but not entirely. EU Member States’ national and regional parliaments and the European Parliament must ratify some important provisions regarding investors, particularly ISDS.
The Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network (AFTINET) is a network of community groups and individuals that campaigns for fair trade based on human rights, labour rights and environmental sustainability. This is an exciting opportunity if you have web-based communication and graphic design skills and are passionate about human rights, the environment and trade justice. The position is part-time for 21 hours or three days per week, on a fixed-term contract, with the potential of further contracts dependent on funding. Read more here.
June 14, 2017 Media Release: Over 30 groups and 449 individuals from the Pacific, Australia and New Zealand have called for a halt to the signing of the regional trade deal, known as PACER-Plus, until there has been proper time to assess its impacts and time to properly consult Pacific peoples. The petition is attached.
June 13, 2017, Media Release: “Vanuatu’s decision to join Fiji and Papua New Guinea to boycott the signing tomorrow of the PACER-Plus trade deal between Australia, New Zealand and now only 11 Pacific island countries shows there are serious weaknesses in the agreement because the three largest Pacific island economies are saying there are no benefits for them,” Dr Patricia Ranald, Convener of the Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network, said today.
9 June 2017: Vanuatu has pulled out of signing PACER-plus on June 14 in Tonga, wanting more time to assess its impacts before making a final decision.
7 June 2017: Pacific Island organisation PANG has called for more time to be given to civil society organisations and the private sector to assess the proposed PACER-Plus trade deal, with the full text being made available only two weeks before the planned signing ceremony. Read more.
1 June 2017: Pacific civil society groups meeting in Vanuatu on May 31 have criticised the PACER-plus deal ahead of a proposed signing next month, without the two largest economies of Fiji and PNG, which have said the deal does not benefit them.
31 May 2017: Australian company Kingsgate Consolidated is threatening to use the ISDS clause in the Thailand-Australia free trade agreement to sue Thailand after its government responded to community pollution concerns and ordered the closure of all goldmines, concluding the Kingsgate mine at Chatree.