Free Trade 101 video from Common Frontiers
November 16, 2015
Trade and investment agreements increase corporate power, erode state sovereignty, weaken democratic authority and are central to the neoliberal framework of privatization and deregulation. They do this by restricting government ability to regulate in the public interest, limiting progressive governance and public services, while at the same time protecting and privileging the interest of multinational corporations. This includes in many areas not directly related to trade like food production, access to medicines, health care, the internet, environment and labour regulations.
Most trade deals include investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS), a provision that gives multinational corporations the ability to sue governments over regulations they feel are affecting their investment, including “expected future profits”. They limit the ability of governments to expand public services by locking in privatization. It affords foreign corporations the right to sue for compensate when public services are expanded or when privatization is reversed.
We call on the government to hold public hearings on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in each province and territory across Canada as well as separate and meaningful consultation with Indigenous communities and First Nations. No agreement can be ratified without full consent.