00:28 GMT17 April 2021
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    WikiLeaks has turned to the public to try and raise funding for a $100,000 bounty it has issued for information relating to the US' proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), which it describes as "America's Most Wanted Secret."

    In order to raise the $100,000 reward, WikiLeaks officials have initiated a crowd-funding campaign, encouraging people to donate as part of push to release more 'chapters' of the proposed TPP.

    Little is known about the TPP, which is a proposed regulatory and investment treaty being negotiated by 12 countries, including the US, Canada, Mexico, Japan and Australia.

    According to a statement released by the leaders of countries involved in TPP negotiations, the agreement intends to "enhance trade and investment among the TPP partner countries, to promote innovation, economic growth and development, and to support the creation and retention of jobs."

    However, critics of the proposals say they're concerned with the lack of transparency involved with negotiations, amid fears about the potential impact the agreement may have on local economies, and the power it may give multinational corporations.

    In particular, health care professionals, environmentalists, Internet freedom activists, along with human labor and advocacy groups have been the most vocal about the impacts of any potential TPP, given the lack of information made public, and the suspected broad scope of the agreement. A WikiLeaks statement read: 

    "The treaty aims to create a new international legal regime that will allow transnational corporations to bypass domestic courts, evade environmental protections, police the Internet on behalf of the content industry, limit the availability of affordable generic medicines, and drastically curtail each country's legislative sovereignty."

    Fears Over Transparency

    Although the text of the treaty hasn't been released to the public, WikiLeaks has released three chapters of TPP proposals since 2013, which the organization received through leaks. 

    However, the remaining 26 chapters have not been released, with WikiLeaks fronting a new push to encourage those with access to the confidential information to release it to the public.

    Speculation is rife over why the documents are being held behind closed doors, with US Senator Elizabeth Warren, a vocal critic of the actions of the US government over the proposals saying: 

    "[They] can't make this deal public because if the American people saw what was in it, they would be opposed to it."

    WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange agreed, calling for world leaders to show the public the full nature of TPP proposals.

    "The transparency clock has run out on the TPP. No more secrecy. No more excuses. Let's open the TPP once and for all."

    There are also concerns that any potential TPP agreement may eventually lead to the linking up of other proposed free trade agreements, such as the TTIP and TISA, with fears these treaties may give multinational corporations unprecedented control over the 53 governments involved in the negotiations of those agreements.


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    statement, free trade, business, Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), Trans-Pacific Partnership (TTP), US government, Elizabeth Warren, Julian Assange, Europe, US, World
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