The Greens believe that fair trade, not just free trade, is essential.  Australia’s trade agreements must be multilateral, reviewable by Parliament and include clauses on the observance of human rights and labour laws, health and safety and environmental standards, to ensure that trade is not conducted at the expense of a more just and sustainable world. 

The Greens want Australia to play a positive role in ensuring that trade agreements contribute towards global poverty alleviation goals, and provide genuine opportunities and equity for less developed nations. 

Our priority is to ensure any trade agreements Australia enters into do not undermine our public health systems, intellectual property or cultural expression, or increase the rights and market domination of corporations at the expense of our civil society and environment. 


Labor votes with the Liberals to bring ISDS to Australia via the China Free Trade Agreement

09 Nov 2015

This evening the Greens voted against the enabling legislation for the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA), an agreement that exposes future Australian governments to being sued by Chinese corporations for introducing legislation that impacts on their profits, and an agreement that undermines Australian working conditions.

Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Whish-Wilson, “Today in the Senate, the Greens voted against exposing Australia to the risks of Investor-State Dispute-Settlement (ISDS) clauses in ChAFTA, while the Labor Party and the Liberal Party sat together to vote to bring ISDS to Australia.


Greens members unanimously reject dangerous and undemocratic TPP and ChAFTA deals

08 Nov 2015

Today during the plenary session of the Australian Greens national conference, Greens party members have unanimously passed a resolution opposing the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Chinese-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA).

The motion reads, “That the Greens: (a) oppose the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) and similar deals that are negotiated in secret, empower corporations to sue governments, or that threaten Australia’s labour, health or environment laws; and (b) call on the Australian parliament to reject the TPPA and the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement.”


Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson has welcomed this resolution from the party membership who feel strongly about these dangerous and undemocratic trade agreements.


US Congress committee to look at changing TPP – Greens call on Australian government to clarify

07 Nov 2015

The House ranking Democrat on the powerful Ways and Means Committee, Congressman Sander Levin has begun a process to review the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement and has left open the possibility of changing the Agreement saying “The upcoming 90-day period was established to facilitate an intensive and informed debate over the merits of TPP as negotiated, as well as the necessity for any modifications to the agreement, before the agreement is signed.”

Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson is calling on the Australian government to clarify if the United States still has the ability to change the Agreement at this stage


TPP text finally released – after any opportunity to fix it is gone

06 Nov 2015

Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, says now the text has finally been released stakeholders and the community will at last get the chance to scrutinise it, but only after it is too late to change any of it.

Senator Whish-Wilson said, “We will be looking closely at the details and consulting with stakeholders to examine the implications of the fine print. The text is 6000 pages long and full of technical and legal jargon.


Labor has caved into the government on ChAFTA: Greens

21 Oct 2015

Greens Trade spokesperson Senator Peter Whish-Wilson and Employment & Workplace Relations spokesperson Adam Bandt MP today said Labor has caved into the government on the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement.

Senator Whish-Wilson said, “This is a second-rate agreement created by a fundamentally flawed trade process.

“Whilst the Labor and Liberal parties will be slapping each other on the back and celebrating this as a political victory for themselves, many Australian workers are likely to feel this is anything but a victory.

“These trade deals are a Trojan horse for labour market deregulation agendas, and giving special rights to corporations to sue over democratic government decisions.


JSCOT rubber stamp for ChAFTA another example of how the treaty making process is broken

19 Oct 2015

“Today, the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties (JSCOT) has rubber-stamped the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) without any independent analysis of the costs and benefits of the Agreement,” said Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, the Greens spokesperson on Trade,

“Even according to the government’s own analysis this deal will supposedly create only a few thousand jobs over the next twenty years and cost billions in revenue.


Labor’s Migration Act amendments are no antidote to flawed ChAFTA agreement

13 Oct 2015

The Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, says that Labor’s proposed Migration Act amendments do not provide sufficient protections for workers, nor are they are a justification for passing this deal.

Senator Whish-Wilson said, “If we had an open and inclusive trade treaty process the passing of ChAFTA into legislation would not be in such a political mess.

"Labor’s proposed amendments are simply playing around the edges, and are insufficient to stop the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) from driving down Australian wages and working conditions.


Greens call on Government to refer Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) to Productivity Commission

07 Oct 2015

The Australian Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, has written to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to request that he refers the entire Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) to the Productivity Commission for full economic assessment.

Senator Whish-Wilson said, “The public and the Parliament have a right to hear the full story about the TPP, not just the spin from the government.


Turnbull and Robb give US corporations the right to sue Australia

06 Oct 2015

Malcolm Turnbull and Andrew Robb have done what John Howard and Mark Vaile refused to do: Via the TPP they have granted US corporations to the right to sue the Australian government over making laws in the public interest.

“The United States pushed hard for the inclusion of Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provisions in the 2004 US Free Trade Agreement but then Australia refused.

Trade Minister Vaille said at the time, “If we had that mechanism in there, it would enable foreign direct investors—if they were aggrieved about a decision taken by a local government body or a state government—to seek a remedy extraterritorially. We do not believe that is necessary in an agreement between two highly developed economies with very transparent legal systems that provide the opportunity for remedy within the state where the dispute may exist…”


TPP meeting last chance for Australia to say no to ISDS

25 Sep 2015

Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, says that the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) meeting beginning tomorrow in Atlanta, USA is the last chance for Australia to make a stand on excluding the Trojan Horse Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) clauses from this 12-nation (and growing) partnership agreement.

Senator Whish-Wilson said, “By signing up to the TPP the government is signing Australia up to give rights to corporations from 11 other nations to sue our government for making laws in the public interest if it affects those companies’ profits.

“The government says they are seeking safeguards against this but according to reports the Investment Chapter is closed and we are locked in.

“Once this agreement is signed there is no chance of amending it, either for the government or for the Australian Parliament.

"The Australian Government will have signed us up to an agreement that allows our laws to be challenged in an international private court without first consulting with the Australian people.

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