Civil society groups say a leaked document from regional free trade negotiations between countries bordering the Pacific Ocean shows the United States favouring giant pharmaceutical companies at the expense of public health.
Tobacco giants are invoking investor-state dispute mechanisms in bilateral investment agreements to challenge moves of governments which are aimed at controlling the widespread use of tobacco products. This scary development highlights the dangers of signing trade or investment treaties which could give corporations the right to sue governments over legitimate health or other public interest regulations.
Pharmaceuticals might not have been the most discussed sector before the Korea-European Union Free Trade Agreement came into effect from July 1.
Tobacco giant Philip Morris suing the Australian government for introducing plain packaging laws for tobacco should send shockwaves through this country as it seeks a free trade deal involving the US, says an academic critic of the deal.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard says she won’t be intimidated by big tobacco after Philip Morris launched legal action to try to force the government to back down on introducing plain packaging for cigarettes.
An agreement has been signed between the Polish Ministry for State Treasury and Eureko to pay the insurer an interim dividend in November 2009 worth €1.85bn.