Trade Pact Negotiators Ponder Perks for Corporations

A leaked draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) investment chapter reveals that U.S. trade negotiators are considering a dispute resolution process that would grant transnational corporations unprecedented authority to challenge countries’ laws, regulations and court decisions in international tribunals that circumvent domestic judicial systems.

“We are just beginning to analyze the new texts now, but they clearly contain proposals designed to give transnational corporations special rights that go far beyond those possessed by domestic businesses and American citizens,” said Arthur Stamoulis, executive director of Citizens Trade Campaign, the group that released the documents.  “A proposal that could have such broad effects on environmental, consumer safety and other public interest regulations deserves public scrutiny and thorough public debate.  It shouldn’t be crafted behind closed doors.”

The TPP is poised to become the largest free trade agreement in the world, potentially impacting jobs, wages, agriculture, migration, the environment, consumer safety, financial regulations, internet protocols, government procurement and more.

“Americans deserve the right to know what U.S. negotiators are proposing in our names,” said Stamoulis. “In the absence of transparency on the part of our government, we have a