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Working people back “A New Trade Agenda for the 21st Century”

The Council of Trade Unions (CTU), speaking on behalf of working New Zealanders, is putting its weight behind efforts to oppose resurrecting the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).

“This week It’s Our Future, the movement advocating for people-focused trade policy, is launching its ten bottom lines for New Zealand’s future trade policy. We’re proud to support trade which is centred around people,” said CTU Secretary Sam Huggard.

Although President Donald Trump withdrew the US from the 12-country trade agreement in 2016, New Zealand ratified the agreement and Prime Minister Bill English has signalled the government hopes to proceed with or without the US.

“As it stands, the TPPA is a zombie agreement. In February 2016 thousands of New Zealanders marched against it. People have shown they don’t want it and we oppose efforts to resurrect it in its current form.”

“Trade policy must put people first. That means having open negotiations, protecting our ability to set social and environmental policy and respecting the Treaty of Waitangi,” said Huggard.

To mark the launch of the campaign, It’s Our Future and the CTU are co-hosting a panel discussion of trade representatives from the Labour, Green, New Zealand First and Māori parties on the topic of “The need for a new trade agenda for the 21st century”.

Huggard and Professor Jane Kelsey will also speak about the state of New Zealand’s current trade negotiations.

When: 10 August, 6.00pm – 8.00pm

Where: Member’s Dining Room, Parliament Buildings

What: Political panel discussion; Campaign launch – “Trade Policy for the People: 10 bottom lines for New Zealand’s future trade policy

Who: It’s Our Future, Council of Trade Unions (event hosts); David Parker, Marama Fox, Barry Coates, Fletcher Tabuteau (panellists)