We are a peace loving, environment worrier, humanity helping, free trading people but I believe over the last few years we have seen a great deal of misinformation and scare tactics out there about the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, driven by meanly by politics, lobby groups now I am all for having a open debate about the TPPA. But I want to have a debate about what the TPPA is not what it is not. This agreement will to help so many people and businesses not only in New Zealand but also help millions in developing markets. The TPPA represents nearly 40% of total global GDP and about 1 billion people, so let’s take the time to remove the misinformation the scary so-called global corporate takeover of New Zealand by the 1%. look at what we know about the TPPA and what we can expect and why the TPPA benefits kiwis but millions around the world.
So what is the TPPA, well the TPPA is a free trade agreement that keeps getting better over time between twelve member nations around our friendly Pacific ocean, hopefully more will join in the future, but let’s talk about the agreement we have now and what it will do for us . Firstly what are the benefits to New Zealand up to 93% of all trade barriers will be removed for all member nations, Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Thailand, South Korea, Singapore United State and Vietnam. but all APEC nations are potential members
The TPPA will help investment in our economy and will help kiwis sell overseas. Worth about $250 million a year or about $2.4 billion buy 2030, Yes I know that might not seem like a lot, but like I said the TPPA gets better over time, what we are doing is setting up a Pacific trade community and we will always be looking at ways to improve the way we trade. Not to mention the special special exemptions around protecting our environment, the sovereignty of The Treaty of Waitangi, and intellectual property laws in regard to Maori cultural resources and design that will stay no matter what.
Some people have worries and they need to be addressed, some of the worries are about the right’s of overseas companies to sue our government for laws that are passed. Well every member of the TPPA will still retain the right to pass laws as they see fit, we will still have the right to pass laws that will protect our public health, our education, environmental laws and Labour laws and so on all business. But companies multinational or not will still have to obey all our laws. will not have the automatic right to sue our government they will have to meet number of conditions, and in fact multinational companies as well as kiwi business already have the right to use our government, this part of the agreement is about setting up a stranded so a kiwi business will get a fair deal if it’s trading here or overseas.
Other areas people are concerned about Intellectual property laws and foreigners buying up our land and homes, I would first like to talk about all foreigners buying land or homes in New Zealand will be subject to approval of the Overseas Investment Office and all foreigners must abide by all our laws and regulations. now let’s look at Intellectual property laws, will IP laws are very complex and I am not a layer and there are many advantages and disadvantages to extending IP laws, but the reality is the IP chapter is still yet be be agreed, we probably will see a small increases to Pharmac and we might find it harder to download our movies and songs from the internet.
Now I know the TPPA is not a perfect deal I know there are parts of the deal that I personally don’t like for example the IP Chapter, I do like my Netflix after all and increased cost to Pharmac worries me. but I want to take some time and talk to you about the bigger picture what the TPPA means for New Zealand and the Pacific Community 50 years down the road and a bit about the economic history of New Zealand.
Well New Zealand is a exporting nation still dominated by the primary sector, we sell manly selling Milks and Cheeses, Meat and other food products I know there is much more to our economy like a large service sector tourism and much more but the primary still makes up a big part and important part of our economy.
Well New Zealand is an exporting nation still dominated by the primary sector, we sell manly selling Milks and Cheeses, Meat and other food products I know there is much more to our economy like a large service sector tourism and much more but the primary still makes up a big part and important part of our economy.
Simply put in the past we have had a habit of putting all our economic eggs on one bracket, so when our trading partners take a hit we really feel it at home. times a good when the UK was buying all our products we had some of the highest living standards in the world in the 1950s but the UK joined the European Economic Community (EEC) and our living standards started to fall, when we signed the FTA with China a few years later we were the Rock Star economy of the world but now the Chinese markets is starting to slow. So what do we need to do to solve this economic roundabout we are on, we simply need to trade with more people sign more FTA’s and work at growing our economy outside the primary sector like the IT, Education, Financial services this list is endless. We need Economic diversification fast as well as supporting our exporters.
If you wish to know more about the TPPA or contact me about this blog please check out there see link below.
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The APEC Business Advisory Council: tradeworks.org.nz
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (NZ GOVT)