Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Letter of the Day

Trade pact too secretive

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The more Canadians learn about what the Harper government is committing us to for the next 30 years by signing the Canada-China Investment Treaty, it is no wonder the prime minister wants to keep it a secret.

This is the most significant trade agreement signed by our country since NAFTA, yet it is set for automatic approval by our federal government by Oct. 31 without public consultation, without parliamentary debate or even a vote in the House of Commons.

These new agreements will pave the way for a massive natural resource buyout and allow foreign corporations to sue the Canadian government in secret tribunals, restricting Canadians from making democratic decisions about our economy, environment and energy. Rather than spending millions on self-serving ad campaigns and sending out constituency newsletters filled with feel-good photos, Harper and his backbenchers should live up to their electoral promises of openness and transparency about their activities.

Canadian citizens should demand a democratic process for Canada's ratification of the China investment treaty while there is still time.

GERRI THORSTEINSON

Winnipeg

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition October 22, 2012 A10

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