Scoop Politics - 05 November 2019
CTU concerned with "upgrade" of China Free Trade Agreement
The CTU is concerned that the "upgrade" of the New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement has not removed the threat of investor suits against the New Zealand government (Investor-State Dispute Settlement, ISDS). Alongside the reduced oversight of Chinese investment into New Zealand with the raised threshold of business investment to $100 million for government investments and $200 million for non-government investments, the risk of poor quality investment is raised while the ability of China-based investors to sue the New Zealand government in international investment tribunals remains.
CTU Economist Dr Bill Rosenberg comments, "We urge the Government to release the text of the changes as a matter of priority so that the public can see the nature of new commitments such as in government procurement, e-commerce, audio-visual services, real estate services and "other education services". With the TPPA, the text was released before legal checking. With appropriate warnings, and the same could apply."
"Similarly we urge the release of the text of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) deal which MFAT tell us is complete even though schedules of commitments and India’s agreement are still being negotiated," Rosenberg said.