The Trans-Pacific Partnership: Empowering Corporations to Attack Nations
Incentivizing Multinational Corporations to Attack Our Laws
The key provision in TPP grants new rights to thousands of multinational corporations to sue the U.S. government before a panel of three corporate lawyers. These lawyers can award the corporations unlimited sums to be paid by America's taxpayers, including for the loss of expected future profits. These corporations need only convince the lawyers that a U.S. law or safety regulation violates their TPP rights. Their decisions are not subject to appeal and the amount they can order taxpayers to give corporations has no limit.
And if that were not bad enough, many of the lawyers involved in this outrageous system rotate between judging these cases and representing corporations when they sue governments. This is an obvious conflict of interest that is forbidden under U.S. law where judges are forbidden from simultaneously represent private clients. And unlike judges, these corporate lawyers are paid by the hour - on average $375-$600 hourly - to act as "judges," providing a perverse incentive to keep cases going for years to earn huge sums even if they eventually dismiss the cases.
Under TPP, the American taxpayers could be forced to pay multinational corporations compensation for any American law, regulation or government decision or action that claim violates their new TPP rights. And, they can demand we pay them not just for their actual losses (what they spent on an investment) but also what they claim is their lost future expected profits if the law or government action had not occurred, and there is no limit to the amount they can win from U.S. taxpayers.
This system is a major way in which the TPP gives multinational corporations that come to the U.S. even more rights and privileges than the American people and our businesses. This system literally elevates individual multinational corporations to equal status with the U.S. government by allowing them to privately enforce a public treaty by suing our country in special corporate tribunals.
Visit www.isdscorporateattacks.org to learn more.
Reports and Memos | Press Room | Congress Speaks Out | Civil Society Speaks Out
- Polling Memo: Public Anger About Corporate Power Dominant Factor in Views on Trade and TPP. Graphs Available Here. (July 13, 2016)
- Secret TPP Investment Chapter Unveiled: It’s Worse than We Thought (November 5, 2015)
- See all corporate investor-state cases and claims launched under U.S. 'free trade' deals (June 2015)
- Debunking Ten Common Defenses of Controversial Investor-State Corporate Privileges (May 11, 2015)
- Analysis of Leaked Trans-Pacific Partnership Investment Text (March 25, 2015)
- Case Studies: Investor-State Attacks on Public Interest Policies (March 6, 2015)
- Ecuador's Highest Court vs. a Foreign Tribunal: Who Will Have the Final Say on Whether Chevron Must Pay a $9.5 Billion Judgment for Amazon Devastation? (December 10, 2013)
- Updated and Expanded – U.S. Pharmaceutical Corporation Uses NAFTA Foreign Investor Privileges Regime to Attack Canada's Patent Policy, Demand $100 Million for Invalidation of a Patent (March 2013)
- Rebutting Misleading Industry Claims on Investor-State Case that Ignored CAFTA Annex (March 15, 2013)
- Renco Uses U.S.-Peru FTA to Evade Justice for La Oroya Pollution (December 2012)
- Occidental v. Ecuador Award Spotlights Perils of Investor-State System (November 2012)
- U.S.-Peru FTA Investor Rights: Lessons Learned and New Approaches Needed for TPP (available in Spanish here) (November 28, 2012)
- "Fair and Equitable Treatment" and Investors' Reasonable Expectations: Rulings in U.S. FTAs & BITs Demonstrate FET Definition Must be Narrowed (September 5, 2012)
- TPP's Investment Rules Harm Public Access to Essential Services (August 20, 2012)
- TPP's Investment Rules Harm Environmental Protection (August 20, 2012)
- TPP's Investment Rules Harm Public Health (August 20, 2012)
- CAFTA Investor-State Ruling: Tribunal Ignores CAFTA Annex, Cites Another Tribunal to Rule against Guatemala (July 19, 2012)
- Global Trade Watch's analysis of the leaked TPP investment chapter (leaked chapter found here) (June 13, 2012)
- "Loewen" NAFTA Case: Foreign Corporations Unhappy with Domestic Jury Awards in Private Contract Disputes Can Demand Bailout from Taxpayers (April 16, 2012)
- Renco Uses Trade Pact Foreign Investor Privileges to Chill Peru's Environment and Health Policy, Undermine Justice (March 12, 2012)
- Key Elements of Damaging U.S. Trade Agreement Investment Rules that Must Not Be Replicated in TPP (February 28, 2012)
- TransCanada Files NAFTA Suit Demanding More Than $15 Billion for Keystone XL Rejection (June 25, 2016)
- Pending Trade Deals Threaten Efforts to Keep Fossil Fuels in the Ground; more than 450organizations urge opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (June 6, 2016)
- Sierra Club Report: Looming Trade Deals Threaten Efforts to Keep Fossil Fuels in the Ground (March 23, 2016)
- Interactive Map of the Fossil Fuel Investments Owned By Corporations That Would Be Empowered to Use ISDS Under the TPP and TTIP (March 23, 2016)
- Statement from Mark Ruffalo on Tuesday’s Senate Vote on Fast Tracking the Trans-Pacific Partnership (June 22, 2015)
- Senior Legal Experts, including Obama's Harvard mentor Lawrence Tribe, pronounce ISDS contrary to American legal traditions (April 30, 2015)
- Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns: TPP investment chapter will further threaten God's Earth and vulnerable people (March 31, 2015)
- Faith Groups Declare TPP Investment Chapter Unjust and Puts Profit Ahead of People (March 26, 2015)
- Lawyers Write to Congressional Leaders to Oppose the Inclusion of Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) Provisions in the TPP (March 11, 2015)