US company attempt to sue Australian government lapsed but still cost $44,000

April 24, 2019: The Guardian has reported that US energy company APR has failed in its attempt to use the US-Australia Free Trade Agreement (AUSFTA) to sue the Australian government for compensation because of an adverse court decision. But Senator Rex Patrick has obtained documents that show that since the case was launched in 2017 the Australian government has spent two years and at least $40,000 defending the case.

Google could use ISDS to sue Australia for millions over regulation for payment of news content

February 8, 2021: A Senate Inquiry heard last week that Google’s Singapore subsidiary could allow it to use a controversial Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provision in the Singapore-Australia Free Trade Agreement to demand millions in compensation over proposed Australian regulation for payment of news content.

Australia/United States Free Trade Agreement

The Australia/US FTA came into force on 1 January 2005. A large community campaign grew around the US FTA negotiations because the US government identified important Australian health, cultural, social and environmental policies as barriers to trade, and sought to change them through the trade negotiations. Community groups advocated that such policies should be decided democratically through parliamentary process, not negotiated away in a trade agreement. Many unions, community groups, environment groups, academics and individual activists were involved in this campaign.

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