Will the TPP transform intellectual property regulation in Asia? – Peter Drahos

Source: East Asia Forum

BY PETER DRAHOS, ANU

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) may yet be the agreement that most transforms national regulatory systems. It could be even more transformative than the Uruguay Round (1986–1994) that delivered the WTO and the 1994 Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). But much depends on if, and when, China joins the TPP.

President Barack Obama, center, and other leaders of the Trans-Pacific Partnership countries pose for a photo in Manila, Philippines, 18 November 2015, ahead of the start of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit. (Photo: AAP).

So far 12 parties have signed a text of the TPP — Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, New Zealand, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam. But each party has to now shepherd this text through their respective domestic treaty-making processes. The TPP does not need the approval of all its signatories to come into force. Six or more signatories making up at least 85 per cent of the combined GDP of the original signatories would be enough to give the TPP legal force. But the United States, with its US$18 trillion GDP, does have to be part of the six. Read more

High Court sets April 28 to hear Tony Pua judicial review

Source: The Star Online

KUALA LUMPUR:  Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua’s bid to challenge the Immigration Department director-general’s decision to stop him from travelling overseas will be heard on April 28.

The case will be heard by High Court (Appellate and Special Powers) judge Justice Hanipah Farikullah.

Speaking to reporters after the parties met senior assistant registrar Nurul Aini Yahya in chambers on Tuesday, Pua’s lawyer Joanne Chua said that the court fixed March 29 for them to file written submissions for the judicial review proceedings.

Chua said Nurul Aini has set March 29 and April 18 for case management to ensure all documents in order for the hearing. Read more

Tuduhan menghasut terhadap ketua PKR Johor digugurkan

Sumber: The Malaysian Insider

Mahkamah Sesyen hari ini menggugurkan pertuduhan mengikut Akta Hasutan terhadap Pengerusi PKR Johor Hassan Karim susulan representasi yang kepada Jabatan Peguam Negara. – Gambar fail The Malaysian Insider, 17 Februari, 2016.Tuduhan mengikut Akta Hasutan 1948 terhadap Pengerusi PKR Johor Hassan Karim digugurkan pihak pendakwaan hari ini susulan representasi yang dibuat kepada Jabatan Peguam Negara – kali ketiga tuduhan menghasut digugurkan dalam beberapa bulan kebelakangan ini.

Hakim Mahkamah Sesyen Mohamad Haldar Abdul Aziz dimaklumkan hari ini semasa sebutan kes, pihak pendakwaan tidak akan meneruskan perkara itu.

Ketua Unit Pendakwaan Johor Saiful Edris Zainuddin memberitahu The Malaysian Insider pertuduhan itu ditarik balik selepas peguam Hassan menulis surat kepada Jabatan Peguam Negara bulan lepas. – 17 Februari, 2016.

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Gender sensitisation training needed, lawyer says after woman’s RM300,000 court win reduced

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Honey Tan (pic), co-counsel for Noorfadilla Ahmad Saikin, said that there are no legal requirements in Malaysia to disclose pregnancy and that it is also not illegal to ask job candidates if they are pregnant. — Picture by Choo Choy May

Honey Tan (pic), co-counsel for Noorfadilla Ahmad Saikin, said that there are no legal requirements in Malaysia to disclose pregnancy and that it is also not illegal to ask job candidates if they are pregnant. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 17 — The Shah Alam High Court decision to slash an award of RM300,000 in damages to RM30,000 for a woman in a landmark gender discrimination lawsuit against the government shows there is need to conduct gender sensitisation training, the woman’s lawyer said.

Honey Tan, co-counsel for Noorfadilla Ahmad Saikin, pointed out that when her client’s case was called for decision in 2014, it was Shah Alam High Court deputy registrar Ahmad Rizki Abdul Jalil who decided on the quantum of the award.

The sum of RM300,000, she said, was never suggested during submissions.

“So to say that there was ‘profiteering’ is quite shocking,” Tan told Malay Mail Online.

“It is not the reduction in the amount of damages that is shocking, but the judicial commissioner’s comments and reasons for her decision.

“It shows clearly that training in gender sensitisation, understanding the applicability of international law and standards, knowledge of Cedaw and understanding state obligations in implementing the principles in Cedaw are urgently needed,” the lawyer said, adding that her client would appeal the ruling. Read more

Long-term damage hard to fix

Source: The Star Online

The backlogged bauxite stockpile seen at Kuantan Port. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, February 17, 2016.

PETALING JAYA, 17 Feb 2016: While Kuantan may be seeing some improvement to its environment following the moratorium against bauxite mining, academics say the long-term damage may be much harder to fix.

United Nations University research fellow Prof Dr Jamal Hisham Hashim said unless the mining areas were rehabilitated, a temporary ban on bauxite mining would not be enough to fix things.

He said rehabilitation meant measures like refilling mines and repairing damage to roads and neighbourhoods near mines.

“Rehabilitation isn’t likely, especially not by illegal miners. They can leave it to the land owners to clean up the mess,” he said, during a forum on sustainable bauxite mining at University Malaya here on Tuesday. Read more

Bauxite mining polluting Pahang’s drinking water, scientist warns

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Unregulated bauxite mining in Pahang had caused severe environmental pollution and raised concerns over the health of those living in affected areas. — Bernama pic

Unregulated bauxite mining in Pahang had caused severe environmental pollution and raised concerns over the health of those living in affected areas. — Bernama pic

PETALING JAYA, Feb 17 — Poor practises in bauxite mining in Pahang have exposed the people in the affected areas to various health threats, say scientists and academics studying the issue.

Universiti Teknologi Malaysia Assoc Prof Dr Maketab Mohamed said the mining had contaminated the people’s drinking water with heavy metals, which were dangerous to consume.

“Almost all the water for consumption in Kuantan is drawn downstream from the mines.

“The full impact of this is not appreciated as water samples drawn for testing by the Department of Environment were not from rivers used for drinking water,” he said.

Speaking at a forum on bauxite mining organised by Malaysian Academy of Science and University Malaya yesterday, Maketab warned that a rash of severe health conditions could break out.   Read more