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Sign up!

By Steven | October 2, 2013

Like many others, I’m worried that NZ is about to sign up to a Treaty (the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement) that looks like it will have wide-ranging implications for our own laws – our ability to regulate genetically modified products, intellectual property, tobacco and alcohol, the flow of capital, the environment, the purchase of medicines, and more.

What’s more, it looks set to contain dispute resolution systems like the ones that have allowed huge corporations to sue governments for enormous sums for passing laws they claim breach treaty obligations.

There’s plenty of reason to be worried about what this might mean for us. But before we even get there, there’s another battle to fight: getting access to the text before it is finalised and signed by our government.

Yes, it is true that this might create annoying distractions for those charged with negotiating the treaty. Yes, the clamour of objections might make it harder to reach agreement. Some of the debate may be misinformed. Pressure might be brought to bear to change it. I’m sure this will be irritating to the governments trying to reach agreement on the text.

It’s called democracy.

I’ve signed the petition calling for the text to be released so that it can be publicly debated before the governments lock themselves into a version that will be almost impossible to shift. I urge you to do so too.

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