Canada China Agreement Troubling
Canada is less than a week away from signing a 31-year trade deal that will give Chinese companies new powers over Canadian economic and environmental policy, as well as our right to speak out about them.
We should not forfeit our democratic principles in pursuit of trade expansion.
Join the David Suzuki Foundation, sign their petition, and tell Prime Minister Harper you oppose plans to sign the Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement without debate in the House of Commons, examination by a legislative committee or provincial governments.
Due to take effect on November 1, the agreement would allow China to sue Canada, outside of Canada and behind closed doors, if its investment interests were hindered – leaving little room for democratic oversight. For example, if the B.C. government were to stop the Northern Gateway pipeline, Canadians could be on the hook for millions, or billions in damages, and you might not be able to find out why.
It also requires Canada to give Chinese companies “the right to full protection and security from public opposition.” Should we put trade agreements before the protection of air, water, soil and biodiverse ecosystems that sustain us all?
That the deal is being concluded with no public input, provincial consultation or parliamentary debate makes it part of a disturbing trend to ignore democratic processes and rush policy and legislative changes that could significantly affect the protection of our natural environment, as we have seen with the government’s two recent omnibus budget bills.
It has been quite a while since I last blogged, but something this important spurred me into action. Please join us and sign the petition.