Greens spokesperson on Trade, Senator Whish-Wilson, provides the following comments on the decision by the Abbott government to spend almost $25 million on advertising to sell the China-Australia Free Trade deal, even though the enabling legislation has yet to pass parliament.
Senator Whish-Wilson said, “The last thing we need is more political spin on trade deals from Andrew Robb.
“We need open and independent assessment of these secret deals, which shut out the people and parliament, until they are signed and launched.
“This politically-motivated media blitz is not a response to a union-driven advertising campaign, it is a reaction to the fact that Australians are no longer convinced they will benefit from this government’s trade deals.
“Australians have woken up to the dangers and hype of secret trade deals, which always over promise and under deliver.
“This government is in disarray; they can’t even sell trade deals to farmers and business anymore without expensive, slick advertising campaigns.
“They are spending money advertising an agreement that isn’t even law yet. It is still being examined by two parliamentary committees and the enabling legislation needs to pass parliament before it is ratified.
“The Greens will vote against it and we are waiting to see how Labor will vote. We oppose any agreement that includes Investor-State Dispute-Settlement (ISDS) provisions or fails to promote fair trade,” he concluded.
Greens spokesperson on Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson