INDEPENDENT NEWS

Progressive alternatives needed as failed TPPA in force

Published: Sun 30 Dec 2018 07:38 PM
Progressive alternatives needed as the failed TPPA model enters into force
‘The Labour-New Zealand First government will be hoping that New Zealanders have got short memories as it celebrates the entry into force of the rebranded Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, minus the United States,’ says University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey.
‘It’s just over a year since they did a u-turn on their opposition to the TPPA and proclaimed a new improved “progressive” deal. No-one really bought the spin, but the politicians clearly calculated the fallout from business if they backed off the deal would be more politically damaging than betraying their support base.’
Professor Kelsey notes the earlier criticisms of the TPPA are as valid now as they always were.
‘Despite the hype about changes that protect future regulation from potentially crippling investment disputes, the governments of Japan, Canada and Singapore refused to sign side-letters that would exclude New Zealand from the investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) regime.’
‘In Opposition, Labour called the economic case that was made for the original deal “flawed”, when the US was still part. The justification is even shoddier now.’
Professor Kelsey recalls that ‘the new government promised us a more balanced, future-focused alternative. Instead, it is celebrating a failed 20th century model that locks New Zealand into low value-added export economy.’
‘New Zealand needs a trade policy that builds on a national economic strategy for the 21st century that support sustainable local businesses and a living wage.’
That was the core economic message from a two-day hui that a number of organisations hosted on an Alternative and Progressive Trade Strategy in Auckland in mid-October.
A new JusTrade website, with presentations from the hui and other research, will be launched in early January. It aims to kick start the debate on genuine alternatives to the TPPA model as the government’s Trade for All Advisory Group belatedly begins its work.
‘While it may be too late to stop this agreement, we can avoid digging ourselves deeper into this counter-productive hole. More importantly, we can create positive momentum towards a new paradigm that addresses the pressing challenges of climate change, precarious work, digital technologies, power asymmetries within and between countries, and the erosion of democracy, sovereignty and te Tiriti.’

Next in New Zealand politics

Gordon Campbell on the Commerce Commission fuel report
By: Gordon Campbell
Bill to allow licensed premises to stay open for RWC matches
By: New Zealand Government
KiwiBuild programme losing another top boss
By: RNZ
Helping our cities grow up and out
By: New Zealand Government
Ngāpuhi elder 'shocked' by conditions at Ngawha Prison
By: RNZ
Independent election policy costing unit a step closer
By: New Zealand Government
Primary and intermediate principals vote to accept new offer
By: NZEI
Breach of 'journalistic privilege' during unlawful search
By: Independent Police Conduct Authority
BSA releases decisions on coverage of mosque attacks
By: Broadcasting Standards Authority
UPDATE: Lack of fuel competition may be costing $400m
By: BusinessDesk
Breaking wholesale stranglehold on petrol supply
By: BusinessDesk
Commission releases draft report on retail fuel market
By: Commerce Commission
CommComm report will lead to more regulation, but same price
By: ACT New Zealand
MTA pumped with fuel market study findings
By: Motor Trade Association
Oil reserves budget blow out reason for quiet levy increase
By: NZ Energy and Environment Business Week
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILEWe're in BETA! Send Feedback © Scoop Media