Going against the crowd

It has been confirmed. The controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal is designed to give corporations more power over domestic laws, including environment, labour and other safeguards.

This and other revelations about the TPP came forth after Wikileaks released the Investment Chapter of the deal on March 25, 2015.

Read more about the TPP leak on Common Dreams

The TPP is being negotiated between the US and 11 Pacific Rim countries. These include Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam.

Like its European counterpart the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), TPP is also being negotiated in absolute secrecy.  The Obama administration has even sought special powers to speedup the finalisation of the TPP.

The Investor-state Dispute Settlement (ISDS) clause is the biggest reason of concern. This clause allows corporation to supersede domestic laws. It gives them power to sue the government if any of the policies hamper their business.

Canada, a signatory of the North Atlantic Free Trade Agreement (1994), is already dealing with the repercussions of the ISDS clause Bilcon, a mining company has sued the Canadian government for $300 million because it stopped a mining quarry for environmental concerns in the Nova Scotia region.

Both TPP and TTIP are facing massive opposition in countries where they will be implemented. The information revealed by the Wikileaks is only going to intensify the protests. The growing income inequality in the world is proof that we can’t let the corporations become stronger than they already are.

Fired up to join the protests against TPP? You check out what’s happening in different countries and show support: