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11 comments

1 Romantic Heretic  Sep 13, 2014 2:31:11pm

I notice the people who down dinged me didn’t bother to explain why.

2 Souliren  Sep 13, 2014 3:21:36pm

I don’t understand the custom for political or Canada here on LGF. I think I understand the customs for music. If I like it and will probably listen to more like it, I’ll click the + . If not, I’ll do nothing. :)

I’ve voted one up. Not because I agree with you. I very don’t. :)
I like Stephen Harper and hope he stays around for a while.

It’s because it’s a post that provided value to me.

As a result of your post I read some articles on the FPIA program.

It would be a waste of time for both of us to debate Harper here. My comment here is about up and down dinging comments.

In future I intend to up ding political comments that are interesting or cause me to research elsewhere and thereby learn something even if I disagree with them.

My understanding of this agreement is that if a Chinese company purchases assets or invests money in Canada, and the government or a new law expropriates that property/asset, there is a formal process to deal with it.

Thanks for your post. I learned something.

3 socrets  Sep 13, 2014 4:00:04pm

Already happening in the subsidiary formerly known as Wisconsin. The homunculus known as Scott Walker sold off rights to an iron mine to a business that will later flip it to China and passed a law invalidating a century old treaty with a Native American tribe to do it. Fortunately, land rights are complicated in the United States and vary state to state; making a complete wholesale takeover difficult. Also, the federal government is willing to enforce its own regulations regarding development, which makes things even more complicated.

4 Romantic Heretic  Sep 13, 2014 8:40:33pm

re: #2 Souliren

My understanding is that a Chinese company can challenge any Canadian law and get it overturned in a secret tribunal if it “interferes with Chinese investments.” So, taxes, environmental protections, worker safety, fraud ferchirssakes, will all be possible for a Chinese company to overturn, without even pretending to pay the slightest attention to the Canadian people.

I don’t understand how you can be cool with this.

5 Eigth Immortal  Sep 14, 2014 7:14:51am

You’re understanding of the laws are wrong. There are no secret tribunals. Nothing there is secret. It’s a Souliren describes.

6 1Peter G1  Sep 14, 2014 11:04:21am

Let me explain why then. What you said is bullshit. Every trade deal contains dispute settlement mechanisms that permit legal recourse. Every one. Otherwise they are worthless. None of the stuff you said is factual. Nothing. There are no secret tribunals that overturn Canadian law. The trade rules and dispute settlement mechanism require only that foreign owned entities, Chinese or otherwise, be subject to the same rules as Canadian entities. And vice versa. Which protects Canadian interests abroad. Perhaps that clears it up for you. That’s why we have treaties. Maybe you would prefer we not have treaties of various types, trade, extradition, defense or otherwise. Or maybe you imagine we can write such treaties to suit ourselves and force the counter parties to comply? But in any case you would be completely wrong.

7 1Peter G1  Sep 14, 2014 11:05:27am

re: #4 Romantic Heretic

Your understanding is wrong.

8 Eclectic Cyborg  Sep 14, 2014 10:26:05pm

Stephen Harper, what the fuck have you done to my country?

9 Interesting Times  Sep 15, 2014 12:07:32pm

Harper OKs potentially unconstitutional China-Canada FIPA deal, coming into force October 1

Chinese companies can sue Canada

As FIPA comes into force, it would have a major impact on projects such as Enbridge Northern Gateway and potentially some LNG proposals. The deal would allow Chinese investors to sue British Columbia if it changed course on the Northern Gateway pipeline proposal.

“It is true that Chinese investors can sue Canada for any actions by the federal government or the B.C. government (or legislature or courts) relating to Chinese assets connected to the [Enbridge] Northern Gateway pipeline,” Van Harten* said.

“More troubling, there is no requirement in the treaty for the federal government to make public the fact of a Chinese investor’s lawsuit against Canada until an award has been issued by a tribunal. This means that the federal government could settle the lawsuit, including by varying its conduct in a way that many Canadians would oppose, or by paying out public money before an award is issued, and we would never know.”

*Gus Van Harten is a treaty law expert, so I trust his perspective is far more accurate than the contrarian, posterior-pulled postings from the harper fanboys.

10 Interesting Times  Sep 15, 2014 12:39:29pm

Further reading (and from the normally Fox-news-esque financial post, no less):

Canada-China trade deal is too one-sided

In fact, the Tories, backed by a naïve Canadian Chamber of Commerce and a handful of big, conflicted business interests, have demonstrated the worst negotiating skills since Neville Chamberlain.

Here’s why:

* The Agreement gives China Inc. “enclave legal status.” Once allowed inside the country, Chinese companies have more power than Canadian companies. They can take any dispute with governments or courts outside the Canadian legal system to an arbitration process under its Article 4 and 22. These arbitrations, unlike those in NAFTA, are conducted in secret, have no limits on damages awarded and are adjudicated by three arbitrators/lawyers — one appointed by the Canadian authority being sued, one by China Inc., and a third from the World Bank approved by both. In other words, Chinese companies are allowed the privilege of having their disputes with Canadian authorities settled in secret by three individuals, two from outside Canada.

* Ottawa’s inept negotiators gave up a requirement for transparency as part of this arbitration dispute- settlement mechanism. The agreement allows the Canadian federal government to withhold documents if it wishes to. This is contrary to all other international treaties involving such dispute mechanisms.

* The agreement opens wide a “Trojan Horse” loophole. Chinese investors or companies already in Canada can contest all government or court decisions and can also bypass Investment Canada. Once in, they can buy anything they wish without foreign investment review. This means Chinese entities already here will be able to act as proxies for those not yet approved to come in, which means an open-ended access to control over anything and everything without scrutiny. All Chinese companies have one beneficial owner: Beijing’s military dictatorship.

* The agreement allows China Inc. to contest and bypass or be compensated regarding compliance with Canadian standards, requirements to use Canadian labour or materials or suppliers. China Inc. can challenge or be compensated if they disagree with the scale and timing of resource projects.

* The agreement appears to be unconstitutional because its Article 4 allows China to bypass and contest provincial, territorial, First Nations, municipal or successive federal government decisions on resource and commercial management.

* Canada has done what no other country has and agreed to lock itself in for 31 years. NAFTA has a six-month exit clause.

harper = worst, most destructive prime minister Canada has ever been cursed with.

11 Romantic Heretic  Sep 15, 2014 6:06:10pm

re: #7 1Peter G1

Your understanding is wrong.

Then what is the ‘correct’ understanding?


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