18 May 2018: A new book by Canadian writer Joyce Nelson, Bypassing Dystopia: Hope-filled Challenges to Corporate Rule, gives insight into the Canadian government’s dogged support of Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS). It has been reviewed by journalist Damien Gillis here.
Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement
May 14, 2018: US President Donald Trump last Friday ordered his Trade Representative, Robert Lighthizer, to end “freeloading” and force trading partners to increase prices they pay for US pharmaceutical exports.
This policy results from the US pharmaceutical companies absurd and unproven argument that if other governments abandon their affordable medicine policies and agree to higher prices, the companies would then lower their prices in the US.
May 8, 2018: According to an Inside US Trade report dated May 3, Investor-State Dispute Settlement is still a key issue at the current session of North American Free Trade Agreement talks between the US, Mexico and Canada. US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer appears determined to opt out of ISDS provisions, while big business groups are frantically lobbying to retain them.
April 30, 2018: Celebrated French economist Thomas Picketty’s response to the ‘shock’ of Trump’s trade policy, calling for all new trade agreements to address inequality and climate change, has been republished as Trump intensifies his trade war this week.
3 May, 2018: AFTINET's full submission to the Joint Committee and Senate inquiries into the TPP-11 is available here, and summarised below. The Joint Standing Committee on Treaties is due consider submissions, hold public hearings and report on August 22, but the government may attempt to cut short the process. The Senate inquiry is accepting submissions until May 31, and is due to report on September 18. Parliament will then vote on the implementing legislation.
April 23, 2018: ANU academic Dr Kyla Tienhaara has published research in the Journal Transnational Environmental Law showing that mining and energy industries are the most frequent users of Investor-State Dispute Settlement mechanisms heard by the International Centre for the Settlement of Investor Disputes (ICSID), one of the two main tribunal systems that hear ISDS disputes. This poses a threat to effective measures to rapidly reduce carbon emissions.
Media Release, April 13: "US President Trump’s announcement that he will renegotiate what is now the TPP-11 exposes the dodgy nature of the deal. The remaining 11 countries reached agreement on the basis that bad provisions sponsored by the US are identified as unacceptable but are only suspended and remain in the deal, and could be reactivated if the US re-joined,” AFTINET Convener Dr Patricia Ranald said today.
April 10, 2018: Sydney University academics Stephen Clibborn and Chris Wright argue in the SMH today that from the 1940s to the 1990s, Australia’s permanent immigration program and strongly enforced labour standards protected the workplace rights of permanent migrants.
April 6, 2018: Leading international investment law expert George Kahale has slammed the Investor-State Dispute Settlement tribunal system in a recent lecture at the Brooklyn Law School titled “The wild, wild west of international arbitration law”.
Your submission will be most effective if it is in your own words, and related to your experience. Below are some points you can use.