23 March 2017: According to recent media reports, Australia and New Zealand’s PACER-plus deal with Pacific Island nations could be signed as early as April - without the two biggest island economies Fiji and PNG.
Pacific Islands Trade Agreement
March 14, 2017: More news reports of Pacific Island workers being exploited while working in Australia show the dangers of expanding temporary foreign workers in Australia without ensuring their rights at work are protected.
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.
February 1, 2017: Fiji broadcasting Corporation reports thatAustralian Assistant Trade Minister Pitt said that Australia wants to conclude the PACER- plus negotiations as soon as possible this year.
PNG has confirmed it will not be involved. Mister Pitt said that Australia would be pleased if Fiji was a founding member but after eight years it wanted to complete the talks.
Nov 24 2016: The PACER-plus deal between Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Island nations was supposed to be signed this year, after agreement in principle to the legal text was announced in August, with details on tariffs and other market access issues to be agreed by the end of the year.
24 October 2016: Fiji’s trade minister continues to be critical of the agreement, and has since told business representatives in Auckland that the current text is still too one-sided.
September 6, 2016: Professor Roman Grynberg, former long-time trade advisor at the Pacific Islands Forum secretariat, says Pacific parliaments should NOT ratify the proposed PACER Plus trade deal with Australia and New Zealand,
August 29, 2016
PACER-Plus negotiators claimed progress in talks last week, despite the withdrawal of PNG, and claims that Australia and New Zealand have "strong armed" others to agree on the text, according to a Fiji Sun article. Market access negotiations will continue in October.
24 August 2016
Australian Unions are calling on Australia and New Zealand to "back off, release the text and conduct a proper assessment so we can see if this will actually help working people across the Pacific – or if it's just another corporate con." See more here.