#TPPA Environment Chapter & Chair’s Commentary: WikiLeaks Issues for NZ 1

#AceSecurityNews says for those interested in the full content of the “Environmental Chapter” here it is in full, l have highlighted and marked the important parts, this may help when reading it, as it is a long document.  

The consolidated draft text of the Environment chapter of the Trans-Pacific partnership Agreement and the accompanying chair’s commentary have been posted in Wikileaks (http://wikileaks.org/tpp-enviro). The documents are dated 24 November 2013, the final day of the Salt Lake City round in November.

The chair’s commentary records the countries that objected to, and in some cases that supported, different aspects of the text. They are consistent with the chart (https://wikileaks.org/IMG/pdf/tpp-salt-lake-positions.pdf) that Wikileaks posted in December showing one country’s assessment of the 12 countries’ positions on many TPPA issues.

TPP What is Wrong?Overview

The Environment Chapter addresses matters of conservation, environment, biodiversity, indigenous knowledge and resources, over-fishing and illegal logging, and climate change, among others. It might be expected to provide balance to the commercial interests being advanced in the other chapters, and genuine protections that are consistent with international environmental law.

Instead of a 21st century standard of protection, the leaked text shows that the obligations are weak and compliance with them is unenforceable. Contrast that to other chapters that subordinate the environment, natural resources and indigenous rights to commercial objectives and business interests. The corporate agenda wins both ways.

The Strategy of a Consolidated Text

The Environment chapter is one of four that have been at stalemate for several years, the others being intellectual property, transparency in healthcare technologies and state-owned enterprises.

The leaked chairs’ text of the chapter and the accompanying chairs’ commentary provide an insight into the process that ministers adopted to break the deadlock on the core unresolved chapters. Both documents say the Ministers in Brunei asked Canada, as chair,2 to produce a consolidated text. It is not clear whether the same request was made to the chairs of the other working groups, but a similar kind of approach would seem likely.

A similar process has proved very controversial at the World Trade Organization (WTO) where it has been used to attempt to break deadlocks in the Doha round (http://focusweb.org/node/12). It was deployed most recently at the WTO ministerial conference (http://www.epw.in/commentary/what-happened-bali-wto-meet-and-why.html) in Bali, which immediately preceded the December 2013 meeting of TPPA ministers in Singapore.

A chairs’ text is meant to be a circuit breaker in negotiations that have become bogged down around a formal text by leaving that text behind. It can be an effective catalyst if all the countries buy into the process. Strong outlier positions can be diluted by the chair’s adoption of compromise or majority positions. The proponents can be marginalised and treated as obstructive if they insist on restoring them, especially if the chair has discretion over what to include and comes from a country that has a strong position themselves. That appears not to have been the approach of Canada in this case, but it could arise if the same approach has been taken for other chapters – especially ones that the US chairs. Successfully restoring positions to the text relies initially on the effectiveness and persistence of officials and subsequently on the relative power of ministers among the Group of 12, and the trade-offs they are willing to make if they consider the issue to be a red line.

The Politics of the Environment Chapter

The chairs’ report shows the main outlier for the Environment chapter is the US.

There are various reasons for that. There is a long history of resistance to environment rules being included in WTO agreements, and certainly becoming subject to trade sanctions through dispute settlement processes. Most of the FTAs that do not involve the US use hortatory language and are not enforceable.

Some parties have commercial interests and political sensitivities they wish to protect. The memorandum by the US environmental groups gives examples of over-fishing and shark-finning, illegal logging, and trade in endangered species and wildlife.

Australia, NZ the US and Canada were the four countries that voted against the adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which recognises indigenous rights in relation to genetic resources and biodiversity.

Parties have divergent positions on Multilateral Environmental Agreements. The US has not signed the Convention on Biological Diversity and very few of the twelve countries have signed or ratified the subsequent Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization. The US is also not a signatory to the Kyoto Protocol of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

The US Political Dilemma

The US has a particular political dilemma. The text falls far below the standards it has insisted are included in all US free trade agreements since May 2007, which resulted from a deal reached between the Democrat-controlled Congress and President George W Bush.

The most fundamental problem for the US is the refusal of all the other countries to agree that the chapter should be subject to the same dispute settlement mechanism as the rest of the agreement. It provides for consultation at officials and ministerial levels, leading to arbitration and agreement to a plan of action, but there are no penalties if the state does not implement the plan.

Obama is going to find this a very hard sell to domestic constituencies. The timing of the leak could hardly be worse. On 9 January 2014 a Bill seeking fast track authority was presented to the Congress. The controversial fast track process requires the Congress to accept or reject the deal and imposes a strict time limit on debate. The numbers were already stacking up against the Bill, with Democrats especially critical of the erosion of their powers and the secrecy of the negotiations, as well as the reported content. This leaked environment chapter will further erode support among Democratic members of the House of Representatives who are up for re-election later this year. Obama is going to have to rely heavily on unfriendly Republicans.

Scope of the chapter

The scope of the chapter is unclear. There are references to environmental laws, policies, practices and proceedings, which is potentially very broad. But only ‘environmental laws’ is defined, and defined narrowly as laws whose primary purpose is either (a) protection of the environment or (b) preventing danger to human life or health, and only when those laws pursue this purpose through rules that relate to pollutants or environmental contaminants, control of environmentally hazardous or toxic materials, or conservation of wild flora or fauna. The chapter would not, for example, apply to resource management laws that seek to balance a range of commercial, recreational and environmental interests.

The chapter also only applies at the central/federal government level, whereas a large number of environmental regulations and decisions are sub-federal.

Indigenous rights and Biodiversity

Most of Article SS.13 on Trade and Biodiversity is weak and aspirational, drawing from the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). It will do nothing to neutralise rules in other chapters that enable commercial exploitation of biodiversity, especially the intellectual property chapter.

In paragraph 2, for example, parties commit to ‘promoting and encouraging the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity and sharing in a fair and equitable way the benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources.’

The sovereign rights of governments over natural resources to determine access to them and to legislation in paragraph 4 seems aimed at reasserting state control vis-a-vis indigenous people’s and local communities, not just over foreign interests.

Obligations in Article 13 are also subject to domestic legislation, which potentially makes them even more meaningless.

Prior consent to accessing genetic resources and fair and equitable sharing of the benefits in paragraph 5 relates to the state, not to indigenous people’s or local communities.

This falls far short of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which all the parties except for the US have now signed. The Obama administration announced in 2010 its intention to do so. Article 31 of the Declaration says:

  1. Indigenous people’s have the right to maintain, control, protect and develop their cultural heritage, traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions, as well as the manifestations of their sciences, technologies and cultures, including human and genetic resources, seeds, medicines, knowledge of the properties of fauna and flora, oral traditions, literatures, designs, sports and traditional games and visual and performing arts. They also have the right to maintain, control, protect and develop their intellectual property over such cultural heritage, traditional knowledge, and traditional cultural expressions.
  2. In conjunction with indigenous people’s, States shall take effective measures to recognize and protect the exercise of these rights.

Four countries (Malaysia, Peru, Vietnam and Brunei) want the provisions to extend to derivatives of genetic material, which is where the commercial benefits lie. This is consistent with the Nagoya Protocol, which refers in Article 5 to fair and equitable sharing of the benefits from the utilisation of genetic resources as well as subsequent applications and commercialisation.

Peru and Mexico also want a requirement in paragraph 3 for indigenous people’s and local communities to approve and be consulted on conservation and sustainable use of their knowledge, innovations and practices, and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits from their use. That is consistent with both the Nagoya Protocol and the UN Declaration.

New Zealand does not support either of these stronger positions. That is likely to create issues with iwi, and with the Maori Party, as the changes being proposed to strengthen the role of indigenous people’s appear to be consistent with the Waitangi Tribunal report Ko Aotearoa Tenei (WAI 262) on Maori traditional knowledge and resources.

The US says it cannot agree to the entire Article because it is not a party to the CBD.

Other issues for NZ

New Zealand is part of the WTO group ‘Friends of the Fish’. The proposals in Article SS16.6 to restrict fisheries subsidies that contribute to overcapacity and overfishing fall far short of the positions they have promoted. These are detailed in the US environment groups’ memo.

Article SS16.4 does not require a ban on shark finning.

In Article SS15 the parties merely agree to discuss ways to deal with climate change with possible links to the APEC process. The US and Australia oppose even that provision. There is no reference to the regional carbon-trading scheme that Trade and Climate Change Minister Tim Groser has been promoting, which would expose climate change measures even more deeply to speculative finance markets, although there is general recognition of market-based mechanisms.

Other chapters dealing with the environment

The environment chapter is one of many – the TPPA is generally described as having 29 chapters or sections of chapters. Environment policy, regulation and practices are affected by many other chapters, which impose substantive obligations and rules.

The most egregious threat to the environment is the investment chapter, in particular the prior consent by all countries except Australia to investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS). The majority of investment arbitrations under similar agreements involve natural resources, especially mining, and have resulted in billions of dollars of damages against governments for measures designed to protect the environment from harm caused by foreign corporations. The US is also demanding that contracts between investors and states that involve natural resources also have access to ISDS.

Chapters that may impact on environmental measures, with some examples, include:

  • investment, eg challenges to tighter rules on mining and remediation rules, bans on fracking and nuclear energy, performance requirements on foreign investors to use of clean technology, restrictions on numbers and locations of waste plants or eco-tourism projects, not lowering environmental standards to attract investors
  • goods market access, eg tariffs (see Article CSR8 on zero tariffs)
  • non-tariff measures – eg green technologies for motor vehicles, prescribed manufacturing or processing methods
  • customs, eg preferential processing for smaller cc vehicles
  • agriculture, eg differential tariffs on organics
  • subsidies and countervailing measures, eg for green or clean energy production
  • sanitary and phytosanitary (quarantine), eg. bans on use of certain pesticides in products, bans or restrictions on imports of GE products
  • technical barriers to trade, eg. GE tracing labelling requirements, food content labelling, emission standards (see also non-tariff measures)
  • intellectual property, eg. new technologies, seeds, patented food products, organics trademarks, biodiversity, genetic resources
  • cross-border services eg. e-services including computerised remote operation of oil and gas extraction, engineering and other professional services, remediation services, delivery of environmental technologies; the chapter is likely to crossover with investment on local establishment of commercial activities, eg waste disposal and water companies, mining and fisheries processing operations, etc.
  • financial services eg. tradeable financial instruments such as energy derivatives, carbon credits.

 These chapters have their own rules, which would complement and possibly conflict with those in the environment chapter. Many will also have their own committees to review compliance, obligations and procedures for consultation, and enforcement mechanisms. For investment those mechanisms include investor-state dispute settlement.

The Transparency and Regulatory Coherence chapters require decision-making and regulatory processes that are also additional to those in the Environment chapter. They may involve preparation and disclosure of documents, right of participation of foreign commercial interests in domestic decision-making, review procedures, use of light handed regulation, and evidence to support the level of regulatory intrusion on commercial interests. These may collectively provide multiple pressure points on a government and assist investors to compile a dossier of material to use in a dispute, including investor-state disputes.

The standard general exceptions provisions are mostly subject to a ‘necessity’ test, requiring the government to adopt the measure for conservation, environment or human health purposes that intrudes least on commercial interests. It must also not be discriminatory or a ‘disguised barrier to trade’. The US has not agreed that this exception should apply to the investment chapter, although it is facing pressure to do so.

Unlike other leaked chapters, there is very little guidance on how the chapters inter-relate or what happens if there is a conflict.

Courtesy of: Professor Jane Kelsey

16 January 2014 (NZDT)

 

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Press release: Secret Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) – Environment Chapter

#AceSecurityNews says today, 15 January 2014, WikiLeaks released the secret draft text for the entire TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Environment Chapter and the corresponding Chairs’ Report. The TPP transnational legal regime would cover 12 countries initially and encompass 40 per cent of global GDP and one-third of world trade. The Environment Chapter has long been sought by journalists and environmental groups. The released text dates from the Chief Negotiators’ summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, on 19-24 November 2013. PDF

TPP WikiLeaksThe Environment Chapter covers what the Parties propose to be their positions on: environmental issues, including climate change, biodiversity and fishing stocks; and trade and investment in ‘environmental’ goods and services. It also outlines how to resolve environmental disputes arising out of the treaty’s subsequent implementation. The draft Consolidated Text was prepared by the Chairs of the Environment Working Group, at the request of TPP Ministers at the Brunei round of the negotiations.

When compared against other TPP chapters, the Environment Chapter is noteworthy for its absence of mandated clauses or meaningful enforcement measures. The dispute settlement mechanisms it creates are cooperative instead of binding; there are no required penalties and no proposed criminal sanctions. With the exception of fisheries, trade in ‘environmental’ goods and the disputed inclusion of other multilateral agreements, the Chapter appears to function as a public relations exercise.

Julian Assange, WikiLeaks’ publisher, stated: “Today’s WikiLeaks release shows that the public sweetener in the TPP is just media sugar-water. The fabled TPP environmental chapter turns out to be a toothless public relations exercise with no enforcement mechanism.”

The Chairs’ Report of the Environment Working Group also shows that there are still significant areas of contention in the Working Group. The report claims that the draft Consolidated Text displays much compromise between the Parties already, but more is needed to reach a final text. The main areas of contention listed include the role of this agreement with respect to multilateral environmental agreements and the dispute resolution process.

The documents date from 24 November 2013 ─ the end of the Salt Lake City round. They were requested by the Ministers of the TPP after the August 2013 Brunei round. The Consolidated Text was designed to be a “landing zone” document to further the negotiations quickly and displays what the Chairs say is a good representation of all Parties’ positions at the time. The WikiLeaks Consolidated Text and corresponding Chairs’ Report show that there remains a lot of controversy and disagreement within the Working Group. The Consolidated Text published by WikiLeaks is not bracketed, as per the IP Chapter released in November 2013, as it is drafted by the Chairs of the Working Group at their responsibility. Instead, the accompanying Chairs’ Report provides commentary on the draft Consolidated Text and is the equivalent of bracketed disagreements for the countries that have not agreed on certain Articles, and provides their positions.

Current TPP negotiation member states are the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei. This is the third in the series of Secret Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) leaks published by WikiLeaks.

 

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Obama’s “Home Affordable Modification Program” Modifies a Way to Foreclose this Person’s Home just Before #Christmas

HAMP#AceNewsGroup  says WASHINGTON  – Courtesy of MCDC  who have found and reported this story about how companies use HAMP! As Billions of dollars in foreclosure settlements between big banks and government regulators haven’t helped Laura Biggs.

The California woman is scheduled to lose her home nine days before Christmas because her mortgage company concluded that the house is no longer the primary residence of her husband, who’s been dead since 2003.

Technically, though, it still is George “Kenny” Mitchell’s primary residence. He resides at the home in Rialto, east of Los Angeles near San Bernardino, in an urn. His cremated remains are part of an altar that Biggs, 65, keeps in memory of the trucking-company manager. Many mementos from their marriage surround his smiling photo.

Biggs faces a Dec. 16 sale date, a holiday spoiler. It’s a property in which she’s built up more than $100,000 in equity and where she’s lived for 13 years, making payments on time. Her issue is back taxes, but more on that later.

“I’m getting ready to get tossed out. Whoever buys the property could toss me out,” she said.

The struggles of the career nurse who spent a lifetime helping others underscore this key point: Despite high-profile legal settlements in recent years that have resulted in large banks such as Bank of America, Citibank, Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase paying billions of dollars for past sins, the foreclosure process remains a mess.

Centre for Responsible Lending “It’s just a continuing misalignment of incentives: that a (mortgage) servicer doesn’t get paid for figuring this stuff out, but they get paid for foreclosure,” said Michael Calhoun, the president of the Durham, N.C.-based Center for Responsible Lending, which has fought to hold servicer’s accountable. “Even today, the servicers are understaffed and overwhelmed. If this were your local community bank, they of course would be working with you.”

Servicers are essentially mortgage-payment collectors for investors who bought slices of complex mortgage bonds, composed of thousands of mortgages that combine to provide the investor an income stream through the monthly payments made by Biggs and millions of other American homeowners.

SPSThe company that collects Biggs’ mortgage is Select Portfolio Servicing Inc., a Utah-based company that services many of the poorly underwritten sub-prime mortgages that helped trigger the 2008 financial crisis and a collapse in home prices. On its website, the company lists a P.O. Box in Salt Lake City for an address, offers no information on corporate officers and gives only toll-free phone numbers that feed to automated call centers.

BOFAThe company became a sub-servicer last year for Bank of America, which purchased disgraced subprime lender Countrywide Financial and its loan portfolio during the financial crisis.

HAMP ProgramPaperwork that McClatchy obtained shows that Select Portfolio Servicing initially worked with Biggs to find a solution, including a potential mortgage modification through the Obama administration’s Home Affordable Modification Program.

But in a Nov. 13 letter addressed not to Biggs – who’s on the deed to the property, though not on the loan – but to her late husband, who’d been dead for a decade, the servicer did an about-face.

“We are unable to offer you a HAMP modification because the property is not your primary residence,” the letter said, saying there’d be no foreclosure for at least 30 days. There now is a foreclosure date that’s three days after the 30-day window expires.

The problem of surviving spouses not being on loans is big enough that the Treasury Department, which devised a series of incentives for servicers to modify mortgages, has an entire section of a manual devoted to it.

“In this case, servicers should collect an Initial Package from the non-borrower who now owns the property and evaluate the request as if he or she was the borrower,” the guidance says, seemingly allowing Select Portfolio Servicing to treat Biggs as the homeowner. A Treasury spokeswoman, speaking only on the condition of anonymity as a matter of policy, said the agency didn’t comment on individual cases and didn’t collect data on the number of surviving spouses in loan modifications.

Mitchell’s loan originated with Countrywide, which underwrote it in April 2000. One reason Countrywide was so successful is it offered unsuspecting homeowners low monthly payments that didn’t include taxes and insurance. Only after signing the contracts did many homeowners learn that they were on the hook for taxes and insurance, too.

Mitchell and Biggs married in 1971, and although Biggs didn’t have her name on the title at the time, her name was on the check the couple sent to pay the mortgage. When he got sick with a disease that causes a cluster of veins in the brain to bleed, the couple started the process to add Biggs to the title but Mitchell, lapsing in and out of a near-comatose state, died before that could happen.

California law recognizes spouses as inheritors of property, and Biggs continued to pay the monthly mortgage with a check in her name. In 2005, Biggs had health problems, and while she kept making the mortgage payments she couldn’t pay the separate taxes and insurance. Select Portfolio Servicing added an escrow account and folded those payments into her monthly mortgage payments until they were paid off.

Fairbanks Capital CorpThe servicer had been renamed a year earlier from Fairbanks Capital Corp. after a $40 million settlement with the Federal Trade Commission in 2003 for illegal loan servicing practices. On its website today, Select Portfolio Servicing boasts that it handles more than 300,000 “nonprime residential mortgages.” That’s a more generous way of saying lower-performing subprime loans.

Biggs continued to pay her mortgage month after month but she fell behind again on the property taxes in 2011. Select Portfolio Servicing initially said in a letter on Jan. 5, 2012, that it would do the same as in 2005 and add those monthly amounts to the mortgage statement, like what’s done today on most new mortgages.

But when Biggs tried to talk directly with the company, customer services representatives refused to deal with her, insisting on speaking with Mitchell, something that’s impossible. The offer to roll the taxes into the loan was abruptly withdrawn, she said.

“Because my name was not on the loan, they wouldn’t talk to me,” Biggs said. “It always had my name on the checks. My name has been on those checks ever since we got the property. It was never an issue until last year.”

Biggs tried to continue making monthly mortgage payments but the servicer refused to accept them. The mortgage became delinquent and later was placed in default, despite more than $100,000 in equity built up.

“A little common sense. . . . Why wouldn’t you deal with this person?” said Calhoun, who has no involvement in the Biggs case. “It is just a lack of common sense, capacity and incentives. This is not a unique case.”

It wasn’t until this September that Select Portfolio Servicing began talking with Biggs, as an Oct. 2 sale date loomed. By then, her name was on the deed but still not on the loan.

“It wasn’t until I came to George that they realized that my husband was dead,” Biggs said.

George is George Bosch, the legal administrator for the Los Angeles-area law firm of Edward Lopez, which has taken the Biggs case pro bono.

“If you have a surviving spouse, legal documents are not necessary. (Select Portfolio Servicing) didn’t realize they were in California,” said Bosch, who did the paperwork for Biggs to seek a mortgage modification through the Home Affordable Modification Program. “They came with a new loophole. The guy doesn’t reside here.”

Select Portfolio Servicing, which doesn’t list a media contact on its website, didn’t return calls requesting comment.

Biggs authorized a McClatchy reporter to speak to a relationship manager with the company last week, and a representative of the servicer said Biggs didn’t qualify for a mortgage modification because she wasn’t the executor of Mitchell’s estate. When reminded that Bosch had cleared up this issue weeks ago, the representative agreed to escalate the case with an eye toward postponing the sale, which hadn’t happened as of the close of business Friday.The Treasury Department, in its third-quarter 2013 servicer assessment report, said Select Portfolio Servicing “has areas requiring moderate improvement” but stopped short of discontinuing the provision of financial incentives to the company to remain in the mortgage-modification program.

And Biggs? With a bad back that’s partially disabled her, she may not spend Christmas decorating her home but rather finding somewhere else to live.

“I couldn’t move in with family,” she said ruefully, noting that she has too many belongings and two dogs. “I’d actually have to find somewhere else to live.”

 

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“Top Secret’ Global Trade Partnership…According to our Guest Post Author”

#AceGuestViews says this was provided by a guest writer and we feature this view as it was printed. We are also pleased to give him a platform to air his article across our network .Hope you enjoy and please comment. Thanks, Editor. 

WikiLeaks Releases “Top Secret ” Global Trade Partnership

Posted by  on November 14, 2013   /   Comments Off
Category: Cover-ups   Tags: 

A screenshot from wikileaks.orgA screenshot from wikileaks.org

A screenshot from WikiLeaks.org

Stephen: This secret document could be seen in two ways: 1. as something divisive and corrosive; or, 2. as “a forerunner of global oneness thinking”(as sage put it when we were discussing its possible merits, purpose and contents today). I’m putting it in to the light of the latter because even if it isn’t, it’s now in the light anyway – for discussion, evaluation, alteration and/or rejection by us, the people.

I also think it’s important to remember that not everything ‘secret’ is necessarily out of alignment and that sometimes things are leaked intentionally to instigate the ‘right’ change.

From WikiLeaks – November 13, 2013

http://wikileaks.org/tpp/

Stop TPP -  Total Peasant Pacification

Stop TPP – Total Peasant Pacification (Photo credit: DonkeyHotey)

On the, 13 November 2013, WikiLeaks released the secret negotiated draft text for the entire TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Intellectual Property Rights Chapter.

The TPP is the largest-ever economic treaty, encompassing nations representing more than 40 per cent of the world’s GDP.The WikiLeaks release of the text comes ahead of the decisive TPP Chief Negotiators summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, on 19-24 November 2013.

The chapter published by WikiLeaks is perhaps the most controversial chapter of the TPP due to its wide-ranging effects on medicines, publishers, internet services, civil liberties and biological patents.

Significantly, the released text includes the negotiation positions and disagreements between all 12 prospective member states. Current TPP negotiation member states are the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei.

Since the beginning of the TPP negotiations, the process of drafting and negotiating the treaty’s chapters has been shrouded in an unprecedented level of secrecy. Access to drafts of the TPP chapters is shielded from the general public. Members of the US Congress are only able to view selected portions of treaty-related documents in highly restrictive conditions and under strict supervision. It has been previously revealed that only three individuals in each TPP nation have access to the full text of the agreement, while 600 ’trade advisers’ – lobbyists guarding the interests of large US corporations such as Chevron, Halliburton, Monsanto and Wal-Mart – are granted privileged access to crucial sections of the treaty text.

The TPP negotiations are currently at a critical stage. The Obama administration is preparing to fast-track the TPP treaty in a manner that will prevent the US Congress from discussing or amending any parts of the treaty. Numerous TPP heads of state and senior government figures, including President Obama, have declared their intention to sign and ratify the TPP before the end of 2013.

WikiLeaks’ Editor-in-Chief Julian Assange stated: “The US administration is aggressively pushing the TPP through the US legislative process on the sly.” The advanced draft of the Intellectual Property Rights Chapter, published by WikiLeaks on 13 November 2013, provides the public with the fullest opportunity so far to familiarise themselves with the details and implications of the TPP.

The 95-page, 30,000-word IP Chapter lays out provisions for instituting a far-reaching, transnational legal and enforcement regime, modifying or replacing existing laws in TPP member states. The Chapter’s subsections include agreements relating to patents (who may produce goods or drugs), copyright (who may transmit information), trademarks (who may describe information or goods as authentic) and industrial design.

The longest section of the Chapter – ’Enforcement’ – is devoted to detailing new policing measures, with far-reaching implications for individual rights, civil liberties, publishers, internet service providers and internet privacy, as well as for the creative, intellectual, biological and environmental commons. Particular measures proposed include supranational litigation tribunals to which sovereign national courts are expected to defer, but which have no human rights safeguards. The TPP IP Chapter states that these courts can conduct hearings with secret evidence. The IP Chapter also replicates many of the surveillance and enforcement provisions from the shelved SOPA and ACTA treaties.

The consolidated text obtained by WikiLeaks after the 26-30 August 2013 TPP meeting in Brunei – unlike any other TPP-related documents previously released to the public – contains annotations detailing each country’s positions on the issues under negotiation. Julian Assange emphasises that a “cringingly obsequious” Australia is the nation most likely to support the hardline position of US negotiators against other countries, while states including Vietnam, Chile and Malaysia are more likely to be in opposition. Numerous key Pacific Rim and nearby nations – including Argentina, Ecuador, Colombia, South Korea, Indonesia, the Philippines and, most significantly, Russia and China – have not been involved in the drafting of the treaty.

In the words of WikiLeaks’ Editor-in-Chief Julian Assange, “If instituted, the TPP’s IP regime would trample over individual rights and free expression, as well as ride roughshod over the intellectual and creative commons. If you read, write, publish, think, listen, dance, sing or invent; if you farm or consume food; if you’re ill now or might one day be ill, the TPP has you in its crosshairs.”

Current TPP negotiation member states are the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei.

To read the full TPP documentation and accompanying information, head tohttp://wikileaks.org/tpp/

Here’s how RT.com reported this news release today:

tppsecretTPP Uncovered: WikiLeaks Releases Draft of Highly-Secretive Multi-National Trade Deal

From RT.om – November 13, 2013

http://rt.com/usa/wikileaks-tpp-ip-dotcom-670/

Details of a highly secretive, multi-national trade agreement long in works have been published by WikiLeaks, and critics say there will be major repercussions for much of the modern world if it’s approved in this incarnation.

The anti-secrecy group published on Wednesday a 95-page excerpt taken from a recent draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, a NAFTA-like agreement that is expected to encompass nations representing more than 40 percent of the world’s gross domestic product when it is finally approved: the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei.

US President Barack Obama and counterparts from 11 other prospective member states have hammered out the free trade agreement in utmost secrecy for years now, the result of which, according to the White House, would rekindle the economies of all of those involved, including many countries considered to still be emerging.

“The TPP will boost our economies, lowering barriers to trade and investment, increasing exports and creating more jobs for our people, which is my number-one priority,” Obama said during a Nov. 2011 address. The deal, he said, “has the potential to be a model not only for the Asia-Pacific but for future trade agreements” by regulating markets and creating opportunities for small and medium-sized businesses in the growing global marketplace.

Upon the publication of an excerpt obtained by WikiLeaks this week, however, opponents of the act are insisting that provisions dealing with creation, invention and innovation could serve a severe blow to everyone, particularly those the internet realm.

Although the TPP covers an array of topics — many of which have not been covered by past agreements, according to Obama — WikiLeaks has published a chapter from a draft dated August 30, 2013 that deals solely on Intellectual Property, or IP, rights. Previous reports about the rumored contents of the TPP with regards to IP law have raised concern among activists before, with the California-based Electronic Frontier Foundation going as far as to warn that earlier leaked draft text suggested the agreement “would have extensive negative ramifications for users’ freedom of speech, right to privacy and due process and hinder peoples’ abilities to innovate,” all of which is being agreed upon without any oversight or observation. Indeed, the thousands of words released by WikiLeaks this week has concreted those fears and has already caused the likes of the EFF and others to sound an alarm.

The IP chapter, wrote WikiLeaks, “provides the public with the fullest opportunity so far to familiarize themselves with the details and implications of the TPP,” an agreement that has largely avoided scrutiny in the mainstream media during its development, no thanks, presumably, to the under-the-table arguments that have led prospective member states to the point they’re at today.

Julian Assange, the Australian founder of the whistleblower site who has been confined to the Ecuadorian Embassy in London for over a year now, had particularly harsh words for the TPP in a statement published alongside the draft release.

“If instituted, the TPP’s IP regime would trample over individual rights and free expression, as well as ride roughshod over the intellectual and creative commons,” Assange said. “If you read, write, publish, think, listen, dance, sing or invent; if you farm or consume food; if you’re ill now or might one day be ill, the TPP has you in its crosshairs.”

Within the IP chapter, the partaking nations in one excerpt agree to “Enhance the role of intellectual property in promoting economic and social development,” but elsewhere suggest that the way such could be accomplished would involve serious policing of the World Wide Web. Later, the countries write they hope to “reduce impediments to trade and investment by promoting deeper economic integration through effective and adequate creation, use, protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights, taking into account the different levels of economic development and capacity as well as differences in national legal systems.”

“Compared to existing multilateral agreements, the TPP IPR chapter proposes the granting of more patents, the creation of intellectual property rights on data, the extension of the terms of protection for patents and copyrights, expansions of right holder privileges and increases in the penalties for infringement,” James Love of Knowledge Ecology International explained after reading the leaked chapter.

“The TPP text shrinks the space for exceptions in all types of intellectual property rights. Negotiated in secret, the proposed text is bad for access to knowledge, bad for access to medicine and profoundly bad for innovation.”

Opponents have argued in the past that stringent new rules under the TPP with regards to copyrighted material would cause the price of medication to go up: potentially catastrophic news for residents of member state who may have difficulties affording prescriptions. Public Citizen, a Washington-based consumer advocacy organization, has warned that US Trade Representatives privy to the TPP discussions have demanded provisions that “would strengthen, lengthen and broaden pharmaceutical monopolies on cancer, heart disease and HIV/AIDS drugs, among others, in the Asia-Pacific region.” Indeed, the leaked chapter suggests drug companies could easily extend and widen patents under the TPP, prohibiting other countries from producing life-saving pills and selling them for less. Outside of the world of medicine, though, the implications that could come with new copyright rules agreed upon my essentially half of the world’s economy are likely to affect everyone.

“One could see the TPP as a Christmas wish-list for major corporations, and the copyright parts of the text support such a view,” Dr. Matthew Rimmer, an expert in intellectual property law, told the Sydney Morning Herald. “Hollywood, the music industry, big IT companies such as Microsoft and the pharmaceutical sector would all be very happy with this.”

WikiLeaks wrote in response that the enforcement measures discussed have “far-reaching implications for individual rights, civil liberties, publishers, internet service providers and internet privacy, as well as for the creative, intellectual, biological and environmental commons.”

“Particular measures proposed include supranational litigation tribunals to which sovereign national courts are expected to defer, but which have no human rights safeguards,” warned WikiLeaks. “The TPP IP Chapter states that these courts can conduct hearings with secret evidence.”

According to the whistleblower site, the IP chapter also includes provisions that rehash some of the very surveillance and enforcement rules from the abandoned SOPA and ACTA treaties that were left to die after public outrage halted any agreement with regards to those legislation.

“The WikiLeaks text also features Hollywood and recording industry inspired proposals – think about the SOPA debacle – to limit internet freedom and access to educational materials, to force internet providers to act as copyright enforcers and to cut off people’s internet access,” Burcu Kilic, an intellectual property lawyer with Public Citizen, explained to the website TorrentFreak.

SOPA, or the Stop Online Privacy Act, was abandoned last year after massive public campaign thwarted the US Congress’ attempt to censor access to certain internet sites were copyrighted content may be incidentally hosted. One of the bill’s biggest opponents, Kim Dotcom of file-sharing sites Megaupload and Mega, was quick to condone WikiLeaks for their release of the TPP draft and condemned those responsible for drafting a bill that he warned would have major consequences for all if approved, including residents of New Zealand such as himself.

“No wonder they kept it secret. What a malicious piece of US corporate lobbying. TPP is about world domination for US corporations. Nothing else. We will stop this madness in New Zealand,” he told RT’s Andrew Blake.

According to WikiLeaks, the Obama administration and senior heads of state from other potential TPP nations have expressed interest in ratifying the agreement before 2014. All of that could now be put in jeopardy.

Related articles

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TPP Threatens Freedom of the Internet

Stop TPP -  Total Peasant Pacification

Stop TPP – Total Peasant Pacification (Photo credit: DonkeyHotey)

#AceSecurityNews says a few days ago on 13 November 2013, WikiLeaks released the secret negotiated draft text for the entire TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Intellectual Property Rights Chapter. The TPP is the largest-ever economic treaty, encompassing nations representing more than 40 per cent of the world’s GDP. The WikiLeaks release of the text comes ahead of the decisive TPP Chief Negotiators summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, on 19-24 November 2013. The chapter published by WikiLeaks is perhaps the most controversial chapter of the TPP due to its wide-ranging effects on medicines, publishers, internet services, civil liberties and biological patents. Significantly, the released text includes the negotiation positions and disagreements between all 12 prospective member states.

The TPP is the forerunner to the equally secret US-EU pact TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership), for which President Obama initiated US-EU negotiations in January 2013. Together, the TPP and TTIP will cover more than 60 per cent of global GDP. Both pacts exclude China.

Since the beginning of the TPP negotiations, the process of drafting and negotiating the treaty’s chapters has been shrouded in an unprecedented level of secrecy. Access to drafts of the TPP chapters is shielded from the general public. Members of the US Congress are only able to view selected portions of treaty-related documents in highly restrictive conditions and under strict supervision. It has been previously revealed that only three individuals in each TPP nation have access to the full text of the agreement, while 600 ’trade advisers’ – lobbyists guarding the interests of large US corporations such as Chevron, Halliburton, Monsanto and Walmart – are granted privileged access to crucial sections of the treaty text.

The TPP negotiations are currently at a critical stage. The Obama administration is preparing to fast-track the TPP treaty in a manner that will prevent the US Congress from discussing or amending any parts of the treaty. Numerous TPP heads of state and senior government figures, including President Obama, have declared their intention to sign and ratify the TPP before the end of 2013.

TPP FTA (TPPA): Trans-Pacific Partnership Free...

TPP FTA (TPPA): Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement Subordinates Nations (And People) To Corporations (Photo credit: watchingfrogsboil)

WikiLeaks’ Editor-in-Chief Julian Assange stated: “The US administration is aggressively pushing the TPP through the US legislative process on the sly.” The advanced draft of the Intellectual Property Rights Chapter, published by WikiLeaks on 13 November 2013, provides the public with the fullest opportunity so far to familiarise themselves with the details and implications of the TPP.

The 95-page, 30,000-word IP Chapter lays out provisions for instituting a far-reaching, transnational legal and enforcement regime, modifying or replacing existing laws in TPP member states. The Chapter’s subsections include agreements relating to patents (who may produce goods or drugs), copyright (who may transmit information), trademarks (who may describe information or goods as authentic) and industrial design.

The longest section of the Chapter – ’Enforcement’ – is devoted to detailing new policing measures, with far-reaching implications for individual rights, civil liberties, publishers, internet service providers and internet privacy, as well as for the creative, intellectual, biological and environmental commons. Particular measures proposed include supranational litigation tribunals to which sovereign national courts are expected to defer, but which have no human rights safeguards. The TPP IP Chapter states that these courts can conduct hearings with secret evidence. The IP Chapter also replicates many of the surveillance and enforcement provisions from the shelved SOPA and ACTA treaties.

The consolidated text obtained by WikiLeaks after the 26-30 August 2013 TPP meeting in Brunei – unlike any other TPP-related documents previously released to the public – contains annotations detailing each country’s positions on the issues under negotiation. Julian Assange emphasises that a “cringingly obsequious” Australia is the nation most likely to support the hardline position of US negotiators against other countries, while states including Vietnam, Chile and Malaysia are more likely to be in opposition. Numerous key Pacific Rim and nearby nations – including Argentina, Ecuador, Colombia, South Korea, Indonesia, the Philippines and, most significantly, Russia and China – have not been involved in the drafting of the treaty.

In the words of WikiLeaks’ Editor-in-Chief Julian Assange, “If instituted, the TPP’s IP regime would trample over individual rights and free expression, as well as ride roughshod over the intellectual and creative commons. If you read, write, publish, think, listen, dance, sing or invent; if you farm or consume food; if you’re ill now or might one day be ill, the TPP has you in its crosshairs.”

Current TPP negotiation member states are the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei.

Read the full secret TPP treaty IP chapter here:

https://wikileaks.org/tpp/static/pdf/Wikileaks-secret-TPP-treaty-IP-chapter.pdf

http://advocacy.globalvoicesonline.org/2013/11/20/netizen-report-tpp-draft-escapes-government-clutches-lands-on-wikileaks/

 

#gross-world-product, #intellectual-property, #julian-assange, #salt-lake-city, #tpp, #trans-pacific-strategic-economic-partnership, #united-states, #wikileaks

Wikileaks’ Release Of TPP Chapter On IP Blows Open Secret Trade Negotiation

English: The logo used by Wikileaks

English: The logo used by Wikileaks (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For years, the United States and partner governments have worked vigorously to keep the public they represent from knowing what they are negotiating behind closed doors in the top-secret Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. But yesterday’s Wikileaks release of the draft intellectual property chapter blew that up, confirming the fears of public interest groups that this is an agreement heavily weighted toward big industry interests.

“If instituted, the TPP’s IP regime would trample over individual rights and free expression, as well as ride roughshod over the intellectual and creative commons,” WikiLeaks’ Editor-in-Chief Julian Assange said in a release. “If you read, write, publish, think, listen, dance, sing or invent; if you farm or consume food; if you’re ill now or might one day be ill, the TPP has you in its crosshairs.”

In a live broadcast today [at minute 25], Assange said, “I think this release is going to pretty much kill it,” referring to the TPP. Assange, who said his team had worked with little sleep for four days to get this out, said that what is being pitched as intellectual property rights is really no more than a consolidation of monopoly control by large companies. This is a “major” release by Wikileaks, he said, showing the agreement would create new judicial institutions that would allow companies to sue governments with no rights. “It’s a big deal geopolitically,” Assange said, by creating a massive bloc that does not include China.

The 95-page text of the TPP IP chapter is from the 26-30 August 2013 round of negotiations in Brunei, and is available here (along with a press release).

The group Just Foreign Policy has issued a reminder to people to fulfill their pledges on Wikileaks donation page, which totalled some US$70,000 if it posted the TPP. “WikiLeaks has rendered a tremendous service to the public,” it said.

There have been further negotiations on IP rights since August, and another round is planned for next week, from 19-24 November in Salt Lake City, Utah, according to sources.

The TPP is the largest-ever economic treaty, encompassing nations representing more than 40 per cent of the world’s GDP, Wikileaks notes in its press release. Participating countries include: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, United States and Vietnam.

US officials have indicated that they are pushing to complete negotiations as quickly as possible by or near year’s end, and have begun seeking support in Congress for trade promotion authority, which would limit Congress to a yes or no vote on the final treaty.

The chapter published by WikiLeaks “is perhaps the most controversial chapter of the TPP due to its wide-ranging effects on medicines, publishers, internet services, civil liberties and biological patents,” it said.

The Text

Parts of the IP chapter have leaked in past years, but for the first time the whole chapter is public and shows the negotiating positions of the countries as well as areas of disagreement.

The text covers a wide range of topics, including definitions, relationship to other international agreements, and issues of patents, trademarks, copyright and industrial design. Examples are the promotion of patent cooperation, patentability, marketing approval for pharmaceuticals, requirements that geographical indications systems recognise trademark systems, and treatment of traditional knowledge, traditional cultural expressions and genetic resources, and setting out terms for limitations and exceptions to copyright.

Assange said that a “cringingly obsequious” Australia most often supported the hardline position of US negotiators against other countries. Nations such as Vietnam, Chile and Malaysia were more likely to be in opposition, Wikileaks said. Countries that already have bilateral accords with the United States have previously signalled reluctance to further expand their IP commitments.

TPP FTA (TPPA): Trans-Pacific Partnership Free...

TPP FTA (TPPA): Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement Subordinates Nations (And People) To Corporations (Photo credit: watchingfrogsboil)

Enforcement makes up the largest section of the chapter. Wikileaks said the chapter: “is devoted to detailing new policing measures, with far-reaching implications for individual rights, civil liberties, publishers, internet service providers and internet privacy, as well as for the creative, intellectual, biological and environmental commons. Particular measures proposed include supranational litigation tribunals to which sovereign national courts are expected to defer, but which have no human rights safeguards. The TPP IP Chapter states that these courts can conduct hearings with secret evidence. The IP Chapter also replicates many of the surveillance and enforcement provisions from the shelved SOPA and ACTA treaties.”

US advocacy group Public Citizen has circulated an analysis of what is new in the latest leak. The analysis is available here [pdf]. Knowledge Ecology International also circulated a detailed analysis of the text, available here.

Extreme Secrecy

Wikileaks pointed out the extraordinary level of secrecy of the talks to the public, while hundreds of industry advisers have had access to the text.

“Since the beginning of the TPP negotiations, the process of drafting and negotiating the treaty’s chapters has been shrouded in an unprecedented level of secrecy,” it said. “Access to drafts of the TPP chapters is shielded from the general public. Members of the US Congress are only able to view selected portions of treaty-related documents in highly restrictive conditions and under strict supervision. It has been previously revealed that only three individuals in each TPP nation have access to the full text of the agreement, while 600 ’trade advisers’ – lobbyists guarding the interests of large US corporations such as Chevron, Halliburton, Monsanto and Walmart – are granted privileged access to crucial sections of the treaty text.”

The aim of the TPP IP chapter is to address global concerns over piracy and counterfeiting, and raise standards in the partner countries, sometimes beyond what they agree in past bilateral agreements with the US.

The view of negotiating governments, led by the US, seems to be that if they can finish the deal with the fewest disruptive forces possible, it might get through. But as with the ill-fated Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) and anti-piracy legislation in the US Congress that met massive public resistance, this agreement also seems to be stoking anxieties that again the government is not acting in the best interest of the public.

Assange asserted in the live discussion today that the treaty appears aimed at isolating China economically. But Wikileaks noted that numerous key Pacific Rim and nearby nations – including Argentina, Ecuador, Colombia, South Korea, Indonesia, the Philippines as well as Russia and China – have not been involved in the drafting of the treaty.

Reactions Strong

Reaction to the text from civil society and advocacy groups was quick and strong. Where trade negotiators seem to be looking for ways to improve IP standards and enforcement, advocates fear it means eating away at civil liberties and access. The following are a few immediate reactions.

KEI (US)

“The document confirms fears that the negotiating parties are prepared to expand the reach of intellectual property rights, and shrink consumer rights and safeguards,” Knowledge Ecology International said in a blog post. “Compared to existing multilateral agreements, the TPP IPR chapter proposes the granting of more patents, the creation of intellectual property rights on data, the extension of the terms of protection for patents and copyrights, expansions of right holder privileges, and increases in the penalties for infringement.

“The TPP text shrinks the space for exceptions in all types of intellectual property rights,” KEI said. “Negotiated in secret, the proposed text is bad for access to knowledge, bad for access to medicine, and profoundly bad for innovation.”

KEI went on to say, “The text reveals that the most anti-consumer and anti-freedom country in the negotiations is the United States, taking the most extreme and hard-line positions on most issues. But the text also reveals that several other countries in the negotiation are willing to compromise the public’s rights, in a quest for a new trade deal with the United States.” KEI also took a shot at the news media for what it called its “appalling acceptance of the secrecy.”

KEI offered a detailed analysis of the draft provisions on various types of IP rights, finding that in most areas the draft goes well beyond existing rules such as those in the World Trade Organization Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). This was particularly noted in the dispute settlement procedures, patents related to health, copyright exceptions, technical protection measures (even extending to the public domain), and damages (which it said are even “much worse” than those in ACTA).

Public Citizen (US)

Public Citizen issued a press release stating: “Secret documents published today by WikiLeaks and analyzed by Public Citizen reveal that the Obama administration is demanding terms that would limit Internet freedom and access to lifesaving medicines throughout the Asia-Pacific region and bind Americans to the same bad rules, belying the administration’s stated commitments to reduce health care costs and advance free expression online.”

English: Julian Assange (Wikileaks) with nimbu...

English: Julian Assange (Wikileaks) with nimbus, stencil in Leipzig Connewitz Deutsch: Julian Assange (Wikileaks) mit Heiligenschein, Stencil in Leipzig Connewitz (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The leak “shows the United States seeking to impose the most extreme demands of Big Pharma and Hollywood,” Public Citizen said, “despite the express and frequently universal opposition of U.S. trade partners.” It shows that “concerns raised by TPP negotiating partners and many civic groups worldwide regarding TPP undermining access to affordable medicines, the Internet and even textbooks have resulted in a deadlock over the TPP Intellectual Property Chapter, leading to an impasse in the TPP talks, the US group said.

“The Obama administration’s proposals are the worst – the most damaging for health – we have seen in a U.S. trade agreement to date,” Peter Maybarduk, director of Public Citizen’s global access to medicines program, said in the statement. “The Obama administration has backtracked from even the modest health considerations adopted under the Bush administration.”

“The Obama administration’s shameful bullying on behalf of the giant drug companies would lead to preventable suffering and death in Asia-Pacific countries,” he asserted. “And soon the administration is expected to propose additional TPP terms that would lock Americans into high prices for cancer drugs for years to come.”

Derechos Digitales (Chile)

The Chilean civil liberties group issued a press release (in Spanish) saying confirms rumours that the Chilean government is at risk of signing an agreement that would impact its development and have more costs than benefits, resulting in less access and higher prices. The agreement would weaken terms Chile negotiated in its bilateral trade agreement with the United States, it said.

MSF

“The leak of the secret text confirms that the U.S. government continues to steamroll its trading partners in the face of steadfast opposition over terms that will severely restrict access to affordable medicines for millions of people,” Judit Rius Sanjuan, US manager at the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF, Doctors without Borders) Access Campaign, said in a statement. “The U.S. is refusing to back down from dangerous provisions that will impede timely access to affordable medicines.”

But, Sanjuan said, “It’s encouraging to see that some governments, including Canada, Chile, New Zealand, Malaysia and Singapore, are pushing back against some aspects of the U.S. position with their own proposal that better protects access to medicines; what is troubling is that the text also shows that some countries are willing to give in to the U.S. government’s damaging demands. We urge countries to stand strong to ensure that the harmful terms are removed before this deal is finalised.”

Michael Geist (Canada)

Canadian law professor Michael Geist gave his initial reaction, saying that Canada appears to be pushing back against US demands, but that “the U.S. – often joined by Australia – is demanding that Canada rollback its recent copyright reform legislation with a long list of draconian proposals.”

Australian Press

report in the Australian New Age newspaper said the draft text shows proposals that would affect Australia’s laws on patents and pharmaceuticals, encouraging evergreening of patents, and with no protections for the nation’s tobacco plain-packaging provisions aimed at reducing tobacco use. Those provisions are the subject of legal disputes at the WTO and elsewhere.

In the news report, IP attorney Matthew Rimmer said, “One could see the TPP as a Christmas wish-list for major corporations, and the copyright parts of the text support such a view. … Hollywood, the music industry, big IT companies such as Microsoft and the pharmaceutical sector would all be very happy with this.”

Published on 13 November 2013 @ 8:08 pm

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By , Intellectual Property Watch

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