Updated Memo: TPP Government Procurement Negotiations: Buy American Policy Banned, a Net Loss for the U.S.
By Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch
Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations were concluded in October 2015 between the United States and Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam after a seven-year closed-door process that has been branded as a “trade” negotiation. But the issues in the TPP extend far beyond tariffs and other traditional trade matters. Under the proposed framework, U.S. states and the federal government would be obliged to bring our existing and future domestic policies into compliance with expansive norms set forth in 29 proposed TPP chapters, including one imposing limits on government procurement policy. Failure to conform our domestic policies to these terms would subject the U.S. government to lawsuits before dispute resolution tribunals empowered to authorize trade sanctions against the United States until our policies are changed. Also, any “investor” that happens to be incorporated in one of these countries would be empowered to launch its own extra-judicial attack on our domestic laws in World Bank and UN arbitral tribunals with respect to changes to procurement contracts with the U.S. federal government