Huffington Post: Did you know Canada is the most sued nation under free trade agreements?
Now Canada wants to sign on to another massive, secretive agreement that will exploit our 'partners' and establish unaccountable supra-national tribunals to further erode democratic decision-making at the national level. Article by Sunny Freeman for the Huffington Post Canada is the most-sued country under the North American Free Trade Agreement and a majority of the disputes involve investors challenging the country’s environmental laws, according to a new study.
The study from the left-leaning Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) found that more than 70 per cent of claims since 2005 have been brought against Canada, and the number of challenges under a controversial settlement clause is rising sharply.
The investor-state dispute settlement mechanism contained in NAFTA’s chapter 11 grants investors the right to sue foreign governments without first pursuing legal action in the country’s court systems, in order to protect foreign investors from discrimination. Drafters of the 1994 treaty included the provision to protect U.S. and Canadian investors against corruption in Mexican courts.
Critics argue that the mechanism limits governments from enacting policies on legitimate public concerns such as the environment and labour or human rights, and that negotiations are often carried out in secret.
The CCPA believes the federal government’s strong commitment to Chapter 11 and its willingness to settle and compensate claimants is encouraging more cases against Canada. There were 12 cases brought against Canada from 1995 to 2005, while in the decade since there have been 23.
- Read more at the Huffington Post