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Australia should stand with Clinton and reject the TPP

Media Release
Peter Whish-Wilson 22 Jun 2016

Australian Greens spokesperson for trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, has today welcomed Hillary Clinton’s call for the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement (TPP) to be rejected.

In a major policy speech Hillary Clinton gave just hours ago, the Democrat nominee said, "To do that, we should renegotiate deals that aren’t working for Americans, and reject any agreements — like the Trans-Pacific Partnership — that don’t meet my high bar for raising wages or creating good-paying jobs."

Senator Whish-Wilson welcome this and said, “Hillary Clinton has belled the cat. The TPP was negotiated in secret to advance corporate interests. It will not benefit ordinary people and is a threat to wages and conditions.

“I call on both the Coalition and Labor to face up to the reality that the TPP is a dud deal and should be rejected.

“Today’s statement by Clinton means that the TPP is now on life support. The Coalition needs to get over its free-trade fundamentalism, and the Labor party needs to stop being cowardly.

“The major parties must join with Clinton and the Greens and commit to rejecting the TPP. This should include a commitment not to bring on or support enabling legislation for the TPP.

“The Greens support multilateral agreements that improve social and environmental standards. The Greens want to see Australia’s treaty making laws overhauled so that trade deals are negotiated openly and transparently and are subject to proper parliamentary scrutiny.

“A modern trade agreement should uphold labour standards and not try to create a parallel industrial relations system. Revelations have come to light recently that the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) is being used to undermine wages and conditions on Australian soil.

“A model trade agreement would never include Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) clauses that allow foreign corporations to sue governments just for making laws in the public interest. These laws are an assault on democracy and have no place in a 21st century democracy.

“And a model trade agreement should protect the ability of government to preference local procurement. The Labor party is out there saying it supports local steel but it also supports trade deals that prevent government from having ‘buy local’ policies,” he concluded.

---ENDS---

Greens 2016 election policy on trade is here.

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