Friday Jun 15, 201211:57 PM GMT
Secret Obama trade agreement would allow foreign corporations to avoid US laws
Fri Jun 15, 2012 11:56PM
Share | Email | Print

  

In order to secure a new international trade agreement with Pacific nations, the Obama administration appears willing to grant foreign corporations the power to avoid U.S. laws.

 

This revelation came in the form of a leaked document posted online by Citizens Trade Campaign. The material came from negotiations to establish a Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade pact and its authenticity verified by Public Citizen.

 

According to the Huffington Post, which also reviewed the document, foreign corporations operating within the U.S. could disregard certain domestic requirements and regulations by appealing to an international tribunalthat would have the power to overrule American law.

 

"The outrageous stuff in this leaked text," wrote Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch, "may well be why U.S. trade officials have been so extremely secretive about these past two years of [trade] negotiations."

 

Both Republican and Democratic lawmakers in Congress have complained about the secretive talks and being kept in the dark. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) has introduced legislation requiring the administration to disclose details of the discussions.

 

Although Congress has not been privy to the negotiations, 600 U.S. corporate advisers have enjoyed access to TPP texts and been permitted to advise U.S. negotiators. AllGov

 

HIGHLIGHTS

 

House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has gone so far as to leak a separate document from the talks on his website. Other Senators are considering writing a letter to Ron Kirk, the top trade negotiator under Obama, demanding more disclosure. westernjournalism.com

 

"This isn't just a bad trade agreement," Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch says. "This is a 'one-percenter' power tool that could rip up our basic needs and rights." democracynow.org

 

The TPP is the first trade pact the Obama administration is negotiating. Wednesday's [June 13] leak further complicates the administration's goal of completing TPP negotiations this fall. Already the TPP timeline was generating political headaches for the Obama re-election campaign, as repeated U.S. polling shows that majorities of Democrats, Independents and Republicans oppose more NAFTA-style trade deals. citizen.org

 

Although the TPP has been branded a "trade" agreement, the leaked text of the pact's Investment Chapter shows that the TPP would:

 

-  Limit how U.S. federal and state officials could regulate foreign firms operating within U.S. boundaries, with requirements to provide them greater rights than domestic firms.

 

-  Extend the incentives for U.S. firms to offshore investment and jobs to lower-wage countries.

 

-  Establish a two-track legal system that gives foreign firms new rights to skirt U.S. courts and laws, directly sue the U.S. government before foreign tribunals and demand compensation for financial, health, environmental, land use and other laws they claim undermine their TPP privileges.

 

- Allow foreign firms to demand compensation for the costs of complying with U.S. financial or environmental regulations that apply equally to domestic and foreign firms. citizen.org

 

AN/SM

 

 

Comments
Add Comment Click Here
  • Latest News
  • Top Hits
© Copyright 2010 Press TV. All rights reserved.