Canada is making a costly mistake by signing on to TPP without any room for negotiation
TPP’s intellectual property provisions threaten Internet freedoms and will cost Canadian economy billions, experts warn
January 25, 2016– Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland today confirmed that Canada will sign on to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a massive deal that experts warn will threaten basic Internet freedoms and cost the economy billions. Ministers from the 12 TPP nations will be meeting next week in New Zealand to sign the deal.
Digital rights group OpenMedia warns Canada is making a costly mistake, given that Minister Freeland has said previously that the deal is impossible to renegotiate. Signing the deal places Canada on the path to ratification, after which the TPP will come into force. Full ratification will require a majority vote in the House of Commons.
“This is a bad deal for the Internet and a bad deal for our digital economy,” said Meghan Sali, OpenMedia’s Digital Rights Specialist. “Given that Minister Freeland has admitted that it’s impossible to renegotiate the TPP, and that we know this agreement will restrict our online freedoms and damage our economy, it's irresponsible for Canada to continue pushing ahead with such a bad plan.”
The TPP has come under intense criticism from a diverse range of business leaders, economists, and copyright experts. Critics include former Blackberry CEO Jim Balsillie, who has stated that ratifying the TPP would be the worst public policy decision in Canadian history, and that its IP chapter would consign Canada to a “permanent underclass” when it comes to selling ideas.
A recently published Tufts University study also concluded the deal would lead to 58,000 job losses in Canada over the next 10 years. And copyright expert Michael Geist has written extensively about the impacts of the TPP on the digital economy and our digital rights.