The Australia Institute’s (TAI) chief economist, Richard Denniss, has lambasted the Coalition’s unwavering push to sign as many ‘free trade agreements’ (FTAs) as possible, claiming that undermine Australia’s sovereignty:
While Morrison’s new talking points suggest there should be no higher power than the Australian people, his government is in the middle of negotiating free trade agreements with Indonesia and Hong Kong – agreements that include provisions for foreign investors to sue the Australian government if our Parliament changes laws in ways the investors do not like.
So-called investor state dispute settlement (ISDS) clauses give foreign trade dispute tribunals — otherwise known as “unaccountable internationalist bureaucracies” — the power to compel Australian governments to compensate foreign companies that feel aggrieved by decisions of the Australian Parliament. Such powers are not even available to Australian companies.
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