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Jakarta Post

TPP will only benefit US-based ICT firms, says activist

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Mon, August 29, 2016   /  12:42 pm
TPP will only benefit US-based ICT firms, says activist Indonesia for Global Justice's (IGJ) Rachmi Hertanti (second left) speaks during a discussion at the Jakarta Legal Aid Institute's (LBH) office in Jakarta on Aug. 28. She has called on the government to stop efforts to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, claiming that it will bankrupt Indonesia. (JP/Reza Zafiruddin)

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement will only benefit US-based information and communication technology (ICT) firms, rather than other companies, an activist has said.

ICT Watch executive director Donny Budhi Utoyo argued that a number of firms such as IBM, Microsoft and Oracle would enjoy a spike in sales, as the agreement obligates member countries to allow cross-border transfers of information.

Joining the pact, he said, would make Indonesian ICT companies a sales target for US firms’ products. “Because they [US-based ICT firms] lead the world market,” he said in a discussion on Sunday in Jakarta.

Meanwhile, Indonesia for Global Justice (IGJ) spokeswoman Rachmi Hertanti said the TPP agreement would equalize opportunities and rules for foreign and domestic investors to do business and eventually squash local companies in their effort to compete against global corporations.

The agreement also encourages members to remove trade barriers such as tariffs and quotas. “The TPP tends to take the side of foreign corporations instead of national interests,” Rachmi said at the discussion.

The TPP is a trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim countries, namely Brunei Darussalam, Chile, New Zealand, Singapore, Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, the US and Vietnam. They represent 37 percent of global gross domestic product (GDP) of US$27.8 trillion.

The agreement was signed on Feb. 4 in Auckland, New Zealand, and must be ratified by all members before it comes into force. (rez/ags)

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