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Byron Shire
May 7, 2021

Trans-Pacific Partnership concerns

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Colin Cook, Bangalow

In one of your letters yesterday, Serge Killingbeck of South Ballina was wondering about the Trans-Pacific Partnership. I had come across reference to it on Asia Times online and, being concerned, forwarded the link to Christine Milne’s office; this is their response forwarded by John Dodd from Christine Milne’s office:

The Greens MPs have concerns about many aspects of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement and have frequently expressed these.

I have attached below an extract from the Senate Hansard of 16 August, the text of a Greens motion encapsulating their concerns.

Senator WHISH-WILSON (Tasmania) (11:58): I, and also on behalf of Senator Ludlam, move:

That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) negotiation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) between the United States of America, Canada, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, Brunei and New Zealand is being conducted in secret,

(ii) draft texts of the agreement are selectively aired to AT&T, Verizon, Cisco, the Motion Picture Association and other industry lobbyists, but blocked from democratically elected parliamentarians, advocacy organisations and citizens,

(iii) concern expressed by experts and citizens from countries participating in negotiating the TPPA regarding its potential impact on access to medicines, local content media rules, high-tech innovation and limitations placed on governments to make policies and regulations on health, safety and economic stability, and

(iv) reports of the latest text of the intellectual property chapter being leaked, revealing the Australian government’s intention to defeat a proposed clause protecting domestic intellectual property laws; and

(b) calls on the government to:

(i) make the full TPPA draft texts and negotiations available to the public,

(ii) support the proposal of New Zealand, Chile, Malaysia, Brunei and Vietnam to permit a signatory to carry forward and appropriately extend into the digital environment limitations and exceptions in its domestic laws,

(iii) reject trade agreements that put the civil liberties, environment, public health and welfare of Australians at risk, and

(iv) commit to ending the exclusionary and undemocratic process of selectively including stakeholders in trade negotiations while blocking others, by making all trade negotiations public.

You can find other examples of when they have raised the matter in the Senate here.

In addition, you will find other references to the issue on their website here.

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