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London chapter hosts TPP submission writing session

Photo: The Facebook promotion for the London chapter-organized TPP submission writing session.

The Council of Canadians London chapter hosted a letter writing session last night to inspire submissions on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to the House of Commons standing committee on international trade prior to their June 30 deadline.

London chapter activist Jennifer Chesnut tells us, “Thirty people attended — a quarter of them new. Dimitri Lascaris, lawyer at Siskinds, explained key trade-legal concepts like Most Favoured Nation and Performance Requirements with clarity and using quotes from the investment chapter of the TPP. I shared a letter template and a framework for lobbying on the theme of transparency — and how it is missing in the content implications, the framework (investor state), the consultation process, etc.”

The PowerPoint presentation by Lascaris notes that the Investment chapter of the TPP applies to, “(a) the central, regional or local governments or authorities of a Party; and (b) any person, including a state enterprise or any other body, when it exercises any

governmental authority delegated to it by central, regional or local governments or authorities of that Party.” It also includes a quote from Corporate Europe Observatory which highlights, “It has become clear that the arbitration industry has a vested interest in perpetuating an investment regime that prioritises the rights of investors at the expense of democratically elected national governments and sovereign states.”

In other words, the TPP does directly affect municipalities and the arbitration panels that would be struck under the TPP prioritizes the rights of investors over democratically elected governments.

To see the entire PowerPoint presentation, please click here.

As we have noted in previous blogs, the 10-member standing committee on international trade is chaired by Liberal MP Mark Eyking and is comprised of six Liberals, three Conservatives, and one NDP MP. They are accepting written submissions through to June 30. We encourage you to write them here.

It is expected that the TPP will be voted on in the House of Commons in September-October 2017. The twelve signatory countries to the TPP have agreed to a ratification deadline of November 2017.

For more on our campaign to stop the TPP, please click here.