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Friday October 11, 2013 MYT 8:41:00 AM
Friday October 11, 2013 MYT 3:44:07 PM
by t. avineshwaran
KUALA LUMPUR: Investments from other countries are necessary but trades pacts cannot be at the expense of national security, Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said.
He said Malaysia became a trading nation during the 1970s and the country developed thanks to foreign investments.
"Now, it's a complex situation. Our economy has improved and big countries will find ways to tap into it. The Unites States sees the TPPA (Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement) as a way of controlling our economy," he added.
Anwar was speaking at a forum organised Thursday night by a group of anti-TPPA non-governmental organisations, Bantah TPPA, where he and other Opposition leaders voiced their concerns over the trade agreement.
The group will hold a protest Friday to pressure the Government against signing the agreement.
The demonstration to be held at the Kuala Lumpur City Centre (KLCC) also coincides with the visit of United States Secretary of State John Kerry, who is expected to push the Malaysian government to sign the agreement.
Thursday's forum, held in Kampung Baru and titled Pentas Perdana: Selamatkan Kedaulatan Negara, Tolak TPPA (Premier Forum: Save the country’s harmony, say No to TPPA), featured Opposition leaders like Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad, Subang MP Sivarasa Rasaiah, Batu MP Tian Chua and PAS vice-president Datuk Husam Musa.
The event was moderated by Solidariti Anak Muda Malaysia (SAMM) coordinator Badrul Hisham Shahrin, better known as Chegubard.
Some of the panelist in the forum suggested that the TPPA was a new form of colonisation and the US was taking advantage by engaging developed and smaller nations to be part of the agreement.
"This is a new form of colonisation. Deals are the best way to colonise a country," said student activist Adam Adli.
Khalid said signing the TPPA would result in the Government losing the right to protect any business and industry in the country.
"Ecuador was sued by an American company in the International courts when they implemented a policy which affected the company. This is one of the drawbacks of TPPA," Khalid added.
Husam said while Islam encouraged trade as it promoted peace, harmony and property, it shouldn't be controlled.
"With the TPPA, big companies will control the economy.
"When this happens, the people will become poor. When the people become poor, the country will become weak," said Husam.
Although Malaysia has yet to sign the agreement, NGOs have claimed that the Government has negotiated 19 times with the US and everything was kept in the dark.
The TPPA is an initiative to establish a free-trade agreement among the 12 countries of the Asia-Pacific region and is open to other Apec economies.
The 12 TPP members are Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam.
Tags / Keywords:
Politics, Government, TPPA, Anwar Ibrahim, United States, Malaysia
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