Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Transpacfic Free Trade Deal Lacks Transparency

On TPP Secrecy, US And Five Others Decline To Answer UN

November 14, 2012 - (IP Watch) The nine countries asked by a United Nations (UN) Special Rapporteur to respond to a complaint over the alleged secret and bureaucratic negotiations for the draft Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement either failed to respond or defended the backdoor talks, according to the advocacy group Knowledge Ecology International (KEI).
In a statement today, KEI said out of the nine countries asked for response by the UN Special Rapporteur for the right to health Anand Grover, only Australia, Chile and New Zealand responded, and all three defended the need to have secret negotiations for TPP. KEI claimed that the three countries were also “lying about or minimizing the expected impact of the negotiation on access to medicines.” The responses can be found here.

The rest, led by the United States, did not respond, a move which KEI found disappointing especially on the part of the US, as it is “the leading target of the complaint and the most aggressive proponent of of high drug prices.”
“In 2009, President Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, for ´his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples. ´Apparently these ´extraordinary efforts´ do not extend to engagement with the UN’s Special Rapporteur for the right to health on a topic that concerns life and death issues for millions of persons,” KEI Director James Love said.
The TPP is a multilateral free trade agreement touted as boosting the economies of countries bordering the Pacific.