TPPWatch Action Bulletin #3 – 5 Feb 2012

Nga mihinui ki a koutou katoa!!

Waitangi Day!

Waitangi Day fliers are now available here

If you are going to Waitangi Day celebrations, please print some off and take them with you.

Celebrity Endorsements

Sam Mahon, artist and writer, and Eli Kent, playwright, are both putting their names and faces to our campaign. Others are being approached.

If you know any high profile anti-globalisers who might be interested in our campaign, please have a chat to them. If they are interested, please direct them to us for further details.

 

Badges!! Badges!! Badges !!

Aue! Taking People’s Power Away…..

Design for the TPPA Button Badges

Available in batches of 10 for $10 from tppwatch[at]gmail.com Please buy, wear and give to your friends. Wellington people, these will be available at the meeting on 10 Feb.

 

Hot Topics

Shanghai Pengxin purchase of Crafar farms: The China-NZ Free Trade agreement (2007) confers “most favoured nation” status on China, which meant the NZ government has to treat applications from China the same as similar applications from other countries. As Jane Kelsey stated in her press release the issue not about China – it is about losing control, something iwi continue to remind us about.

 It also casts a spotlight on the even greater risks of the more extensive foreign investor rights proposed for the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), a debate that the government is desperate to avoid. The US is demanding much stronger protections for its would-be investors in the TPPA than China secured and the Key government has apparently rolled over and agreed to them, unlike Australia. The popular angst being channelled towards the Chinese needs to become a more principled opposition to deals that sign the sovereignty of our resources over to foreign corporations and who can sue the government in offshore courts if they don’t get their way.

http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1201/S00137/china-could-have-sued-under-fta-if-crafar-farm-sale-declined.htm 

Asset Sales, te Tiriti and Section 9 of the SOEs Act: Section 9 requires the government exercising powers under the SOE Act to comply with the ‘principles of the Treaty of Waitangi’. As the government plots to bypass te Tiriti in the privatisations of the SOEs and justifies the sale of the Crafar farms as necessary to honour its free trade obligations, we need to ask why treaties with foreign investors are sacred while te Tiriti with tangata whenua doesn’t count – and what that means for the TPPA? The standard Tiriti provision in NZ’s FTAs reserves the right for the government to give preferences to Maori under the Treaty of Waitangi – but it has to see it as a Treaty issue and want to act. There are also lots of issues the exception doesn’t apply to.

 

Media & Blogs

Chris Trotter, ‘Most favoured nation?’ http://bowalleyroad.blogspot.co.nz/

Teresa O’Connor, ‘A humble man amid all the swagger’, Nelson Mail, http://www.stuff.co.nz/nelson-mail/opinion/columnists/teresa-o-connor/6340805/A-humble-man-amid-all-the-swagger  (see last part of the article)

Gareth Hughes, ‘Trans Pacific Partnership to impact Kiwi books’, http://blog.greens.org.nz/2012/01/24/trans-pacific-partnership-to-impact-kiwi-books/

 

Melbourne activities & stakeholder registration, 11th round of TPPA negotiations 1-9 March

Information about actions will be posted on http://aftinet.org.au/cms/trans-pacific-partnership-agreement/trans-pacific-partnership-agreement

Stakeholder registration is now open using this website until 17 February. This allows presentation of views at a ‘stakeholders’ forum on Sunday 4 March, a reception with negotiators on Tuesday 6 March, and a briefing on Wednesday 7 March. A short expression of interest outlining your proposed topic needs to reach tpp[at]dfat.gov.au by Friday 10 February.

If you are thinking of going to Melbourne please contact us at tppwatch[at]gmail.com

 

US Action

Intersessional negotiations – ie we are not welcome – on the TPPA took place in Southern California last week. There there were lots of great activities and unhappy US negotiators!

Our favourite is ‘Hollywood Gets To Party With TPP Negotiators; Public Interest Groups Get Thrown Out Of Hotel’ http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120131/23161417605/hollywood-gets-to-party-with-tpp-negotiators-public-interest-groups-get-thrown-out-hotel.shtml

For activities and protest photos, see:

http://www.citizenstrade.org/ctc/blog/2012/02/02/photos-from-trans-pacific-fta-actions-in-southern-california/

A new backgrounder prepared for the US activists: http://www.citizenstrade.org/ctc/trade-policies/tpp-potential-trade-policy-problems/

 

Wellington Strategy Meeting on 10 February

There will be a strategy meeting for people who volunteered to coordinate TPPA interest groups in Wellington at TEU meeting room 8th floor Education House Willis St, 10 February 2-4pm.  Others are welcome.

Please update us on news and local activities

If anyone has any TPP activities to tell us about or good articles please contact Mary Ellen oconstance[at]gmail.com (the bulletin) and/or Hannah tppwatch[at]gmail.com (the website).

Find out more about the issues and campaign on www.tppwatch.org and follow the links.

Thanks! Mary-Ellen O’Connor and Jane Kelsey on behalf of TPPWatch

Download this bulletin as a Word file. Download this bulletin as a PDF.

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