Waitangi Tribunal starts urgent hearing on TPP

Waitangi Tribunal starts urgent hearing on TPP

The Waitangi Tribunal is starting an urgent hearing into claims relating to the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement as the government continues a roadshow to sell the trade deal.

The Waitangi Tribunal hearing starts on Monday and for five days it will consider issues including whether the provisions in the TPPA relating to the Treaty of Waitangi provide effective protection of Maori, and what Maori input is required for ratification.

The TPPA has been signed but is being considered by the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee and changes have to be made to New Zealand law to implement it.

The government is holding a roadshow to promote the TPPA, and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Paul Goldsmith fronts a public meeting in Dunedin on Monday as part of that process.

The Waitangi Tribunal hearing is presided over by Judge Michael Doogan and a panel consists of Sir Tamati Reedy, Sir Douglas Kidd, David Cochrane and Tania Simpson.

The Waitangi Tribunal is a permanent commission of inquiry charged with making recommendations on claims brought by Maori relating to the Treaty of Waitangi. It has the power to make non-binding recommendations to government.