Monday, 11 August 2008

Russel Norman: speech to parliament on FTA with China

This trade agreement between New Zealand and China fails to protect the sovereignty of the democratically elected Government of New Zealand, and it places significant restrictions on the future ability of the New Zealand Government and Parliament to pass regulations to protect the people and environment of Aotearoa New Zealand.
There are many reasons why the New Zealand Government should not have signed this preferential trade agreement with China, not least of which is the fact that New Zealand signed this agreement while China was involved in the murderous oppression of the people of Tibet. It is also of grave concern that this agreement has no binding labour or environmental standards. The lower wages and standards in China will effectively be a non-tariff barrier to fair trade, giving corporations that pollute or pay inhumane wages a competitive advantage over those that do not.

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