TiSA reduces COP21 to a charade

Written By: - Date published: 10:04 am, December 5th, 2015 - 13 comments
Categories: climate change, energy, Environment, ETS, global warming, Globalisation, International, Mining, national, privatisation, Privatisation, trade - Tags: , , , , ,

While the world’s eyes are focused on COP21 in Paris, the laws and regulations which will actually be put in place to ameliorate climate change are being simultaneously discussed in secret at the TiSA negotiations in Geneva.

The Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) is an adjunct to the World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS). Difficult to follow? Its supposed to be . . . makes it hard for people to catch on to what’s up. Fortunately, there was a massive leak of documents earlier this year and, on November 30, Wikileaks released an expert analysis of the proposed TiSA Annex “Energy Related Services” (ETS). If even just a few parts of the expert analysis come to fruition, COP21 is an utter charade.

For example, the analysis shows that it is the current intention of  TiSA’s participating nations to:

  • establish as Article 1 a principle of “technological neutrality” whereby commitments would extend across all energy sectors regardless of the fuel source of technology, denying regulators the right to distinguish solar from nuclear, wind from coal, or geothermal from fracking
  • reduce states’ sovereignity over energy resources (regardless of Article V’s declaring otherwise) by requiring states to establish free markets for foreign suppliers of energy related services thereby removing the right to ensure domestic economic benefits from exploiting energy resources
  • shift political power over energey and climate policies from people using their governments for shaping fair and sustainable economies to global corporations using TiSA restricting governments from regulating energy markets, companies, and industry infrastructure

New Zealand was locked into compliance with what ever TiSA comes up with when the, so-called, “free trade” deal with South Korea was signed. The leaking of the TiSA material in June, exposed New Zealand as one of the most extreme neoliberal nations involved, particularly in relation to the reduction of state sovereignty.  TiSA itself is so extreme, the WTO barely wants anything to do with it.

That National Ltd™ is preparing to remove any ability for government to do anything about climate change explains why expectations are being talked down: we’re being softened up. It also partly explains the zombie-like performance of John Key in Paris: he knows COP21 is just a big waste of time.

Hat Tip: Tautoko Mangō Mata

13 comments on “TiSA reduces COP21 to a charade”

  1. Good this is getting some light – they lie, lie about their lies, pretend, lie about their pretense, and for what? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. All of those generations of survival for the DNA to end up in these scum – the pinnacle of self interest. It is time for no more mr niceguy – they don’t deserve it and our children don’t deserve it.

  2. savenz 2

    +100 – the whole thing is a joke. World leaders’ have been pretending to do something about climate change for years while actually negotiating and regulating on behalf of polluters, for tax payers to keep subsiding their polluting or at least keep their profits in tact when cleaner energy become the norm. TPPA and TiSA are just the way to hide the process to maintain polluting at current levels OR reward the lost profits from those companies in separate courts outside of local democratic control.

    I have lived in many countries and NZ is the most neoliberal of them all. It is like a cult here!!! John Key is a well named as a fossil of the climate change, his biggest desire is to reward those that pollute the environment and then make a killing from it.

  3. Tautuhi 3

    Unfortunately in todays world politicans are linked to the business community and they are mutually inclusive, if you look at the wealthy individuals/families/companies in NZ they have direct links with Government or have had in the past.

  4. galeandra 4

    I find the stealth around these matters extremely concerning, and the level of opacity generated by dry reportage on largely embargoed discussions and documents makes it very difficult for the average person to understand exactly what was agreed by whom, when and where. I vaguely recollect the discussion in the build-up of the S Korean FTA but apart from information about its 2015 sign-off and some puff about its being good for trade via tariff removal, I haven’t a clue of details or implications.
    As the post points out, we are moving into a world hemmed in by an intricately interconnected web of regulations which seriously erode our sovereign powers to effect necessary changes outside the concourse of international trade.
    I presume Goff et al were involved in this in the early stages at least? Has Labour simply accepted it as A Very Good Thing?

  5. Tautuhi 5

    As I understand it the TPPA has been written up by Corporate America lawyers to protect American Corporations business and revenue streams in the countries that subscribe to the TPPA Agreement, this enables these corporations to sue Governments ie taxpayers for changes in regulations that affect Corporations profits in parcipitating countries. An example of this is Philip Morris suing the Australian Government for changing the packaging laws on tobbacco.

  6. Tautoko Mangō Mata 6

    How outrageous and unethically indefensible is it that, at the same time countries are trying to put together a climate package, the secretive TISA are white-anting any outcome!
    The morally bereft corporations behind TISA are the real enemy. Where is our media on this? WikiLeaks have handed this major scandal to them.
    On the mfat website re TISA the following statement is written:

    Any such agreement should:

    Be comprehensive in scope, including substantial sectoral coverage with no a priori exclusion of any sector or mode of supply.

    Since I am not a Latin scholar, I looked up the meaning of a priori.

    The term a priori is used in philosophy to indicate deductive reasoning. The term is Latin, meaning “from what comes before”, referring to that which comes before experience.

    Something that is known a priori can safely be considered to be a true statement, assuming that the logic (or deductive reasoning) used to arrive at that conclusion is conducted using valid arguments.

    So this means that TISA involves not using any prior knowledge or valid arguments??!!

  7. Vaughan Little 7

    how did the Korean fta hook us onto that bandwagon?

  8. Bill 8

    And I’ll say yet again, Messrs Mussolini and the wee fella who headed Germany’s National Socialists would be cock-a-hoop if they could see how things have been proceeding of late; perhaps especially at the compliance of those soft shoe shuffle social democrats and social democratic entities that would make great claims for their supposed opposition to fascism.

    • Tautuhi 9.1

      Interesting article, says it all doesn’t it, especially with regards to the lack of safeguards for the environment here in NZ. This TPPA opens up a huge can of worms.

  9. Pat 10


    ” But, perhaps, the biggest lesson that Uruguay can provide to the delegates in Paris is the importance of strong decision-making. As has been the case at countless UN climate conferences, Uruguay was once paralysed by a seemingly endless and rancorous debate about energy policy.”

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