Regulatory Divergence and Convergence in the Age of Megaregionals
Edited by Shin-yi Peng, Han-Wei Liu and Ching-Fu Lin
Chapter 7: Trade and biological diversity governance in the age of megaregionalism
The TPP includes a small number of provisions on trade and biodiversity. It requires parties to promote sustainable use of biological diversity and to respect knowledge and practices of indigenous and local communities relating to sustainable use of biodiversity. TPP parties also recognize that some parties may require prior informed consent to access genetic resources and establish mutually agreed terms regarding sharing of benefits from the use of such genetic resources. Public participation and consultation mechanisms and cooperation frameworks are also established in this regard. Although these provisions look largely hortatory in their binding effect, they reflect historical and fundamental philosophical tensions between the Bretton Woods trade liberalism and the New International Economic Order, presenting a new paradigm of permanent sovereignty over natural resources. How to avoid clashes between these two paradigms and to achieve the goal of sustainable economic growth has become a primary issue in the era of mega-FTAs. In this light, the TPP has taken a mega-step for the prevention of a global clash between trade and environment regimes toward the mutually non-exclusive trade and biodiversity governance in the twenty-first century.
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