Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP)  is a massive free trade agreement involving Australia and ten other Pacific Rim countries, which reduces our democratic rights while increasing the rights of global corporations. The TPP is bad for:

  • Democracy. It allows global corporations to sue governments over health, environment and public interest laws. Read more.
  • Workers. Contains no real protection for labour rights or migrant workers, and removes labour market testing for temporary migrant workers. Read more.
  • Essential services:  locks in deregulation, promotes privatisation and prevents future governments from regulating in the public interest, Read more
  • The environment. Lacks enforceable commitments to key international agreements, does not mention climate change and allows corporations to sue over new environmental laws. Read more.
  • Internet users. Locks in strong rights for copyright holders at the expense of consumers and internet users. Read more.

After six years of community campaigning, the withdrawal of the US in January 2017 meant the original TPP-12 could not proceed, but the 11 remaining governments suspended some clauses and rebadged it as the Comprenensive Progressive TPP or  TPP-11, which was signed in March 2018 and approved for ratification by the Australian Parliament in October 2018,   If six of the eleven countries ratify it before the end of 2018, it will come into force for those countries in 2019.

For in-depth analysis and resources, including AFTINET’s submissions to parliamentary inquiries, click here. 

Updated October  2018

ACTU leader says trade deals must not undermine workers’ rights

March 22, 2018: In her speech to the National Press Club yesterday, ACTU secretary Sally McManus argued that unfair trade agreements like the CPTPP were contributing to casualisation and underpayment of wages, and that major changes were needed to the industrial relations system.

She said "these trade agreements are not free, they are a complex set of rules negotiated by governments, pushed by big corporations."

Videos from our recent forum on women and the TPP

15 March, 2018: On International Women’s Day AFTINET and ActionAid Australia hosted a successful forum on the impact that the TPP would have on women across the globe. The forum was moderated by Jill Biddington from APHEDA- Union Aid Abroad and Dr Patricia Ranald (AFTINET), Michelle Higelin (ActionAid Australia) and Jane Brock (Immigrant Women’s Speakout Association) all gave short presentations. A video recording of the full forum has been posted here, thanks to ActionAid Australia.

CPTPP signing Trumped by US tariff move

March 12, 2018: The Comprehensive Progressive Agreement on Trans-Pacific Partnership – even without the US – is still about maximising corporate rights and minimising government regulation in the public interest.  Despite the suspension of 22 clauses, foreign corporations will still have the right to bypass national courts and sue governments if they can claim that a change in law or policy harms their investment. And there are still 30 other chapters that mostly restrict future democratic regulation.

Revised TPP-11 text is largely unchanged: independent assessment and Senate Inquiry needed

Media release, February 21 2018: “The new text of the revised and rebranded Comprehensive Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership between Australia and 10 other countries without the US contains minor additional change since last November. Some other governments have demanded further changes, but the Australian government has not,” Dr Patricia Ranald, AFTINET Convener said today.

Pages