Friends of the Earth International Press Release Auckland, New Zealand 4th February 2016, Today trade ministers from 12 countries party to the giant 'Trans Pacific Partnership' held a symbolic signing of a trade deal which sets the economic and pro corporate rules for 40 percent of the world economy. Friends of the Earth International warned that the 'Trans Pacific Partnership', or TPP, will threaten people and planet, if ratified. Sam Cossar-Gilbert, Friends of the Earth International Economic Justice Coordinator, said: “The TPP signing ceremony is nothing more than a photo opportunity to try and prop up this deeply unpopular and environmentally destructive deal. Trade ministers know that it will be very difficult to ratify the TPP in national parliaments, particularly in the US where all leading presidential candidates oppose it.”
By Bill Waren, senior trade analyst, Friends of the Earth US Friends of the Earth is disappointed but not surprised with what President Obama had to say in his State of the Union address about the environmentally-destructive Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement. Nor were we astonished that the reaction of most Members of Congress was unenthusiastic. What is most remarkable is that President Obama devoted less than 30 seconds of his hour long speech to the TPP, his most significant legislative proposal in 2016. Without doubt, he sees the TPP as a legacy defining achievement in the course of his eight years in office. But rather than making a reasoned argument in support of the TPP, he quickly changed the subject.
The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a secret trade agreement that will adversely affect the environment, worker’s rights, cost of medicines, internet freedoms, food safety, intellectual property rights and indigenous rights. Friends of the Earth Australia (FoEA) has long warned that the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) chapter in the TPP agreement will potentially allow corporations to override our domestic laws and enable foreign corporations to sue our Government if we implement policy and legislation that may impact the ‘future profitability’ of a corporation. FoEA campaigner Cam Walker said "Tobacco giant Phillip Morris has already launched a lawsuit against the Australian government in relation to the introduction of plain-packaging laws. Thankfully this was not successful. However, the TPP could open the door to similar lawsuits under the TPP ISDS clause".
Several UN Sustainable Development Goals are irreconcilable with Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal From September 30 to October 2nd Andrew Robb and Trade Ministers from 11 other countries negotiating the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) met in Atlanta to finalise a gigantic trade deal, which threatens global sustainable development.
Academics from across Australia and New Zealand are descending on Brisbane for the next two days to discuss how to challenge the increasing corporatisation of universities, which is drastically reducing the quality of research and academic life. Challenging the Privatised University is being co-hosted by Friends of the Earth, the Ngara Institute, the NTEU, the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) and the National Alliance for Public Universities and aims to support the revitalisation of the public and intellectual importance of Universities.
The Final TPP text, released on Thursday night, confirms all of our worst fears. The Environment Chapter is weak and lazy, encouraging rather than enforcing any regulations that may otherwise have served to protect the natural environment. The General Commitments outlined at the beginning of the chapter state that nations must “strive to ensure that [their] environmental laws and policies provide for, and encourage, high levels of environmental protection and... continue to improve [their] respective levels of environmental protection”, but also that they must “recognise the sovereign right of each Party to establish its own levels of domestic environmental protection and its own environmental priorities, and to establish, adopt or modify its environmental laws and policies accordingly”. In other words, it would be nice if the participating nations had solid environmental laws, but nothing will be enforced.
Melbourne community groups and unions have joined the International week of action against the TPP, staging a rally outside the office of Veolia in Melbourne.Under the ISDS Clauses in “Free” Trade Agreements foreign corporations can sue sovereign governments where they claim domestic laws and regulations may diminish their profits. Workers’ wages and conditions, health and safety are not exempt.
Friends of the Earth International 5 October 2015 ATLANTA, USA, October 5, 2015 – Today trade ministers from 12 countries negotiating the giant 'Trans Pacific Partnership' reached an agreement on a trade deal which sets the economic rules for 40 percent of the world economy.