I am writing here as per request.
I initially had no interest in these things because (a) the economy is already in deep trouble and what difference would this TPPA make even if it is for the worse; and (b) would anybody in government bother to rethink carefully if they know how to protect the national interest instead of the interest of the party. (But seriously, the party is over and now we have to clean up the mess.)
I think I may have something to add.
TPPA stands for the "Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement."
Trans-pacific is a very USA terminology for when they look over the Pacific Ocean, they are looking at the whole of Area. (When they look over the Alantic Ocean, they are looking at Europe.) So the TPPA is a very American intiative. The US wants it, not us in Asia.
It is obvious that China is not included in the TPPA negotiations. For one, China wouldn't be so stupid to be tied by the US. Two, the US is obviously tying up with its "allies" in Asia in order to counter China which has surged to scary heights economically. The US is in decline economically and is in sore need of a strategic move to at least play defensive against China.
1. If I were the US, what I want from the TPPA is for all partner-nations to operate subservient to US companies with the US government setting the rules of the game. In other words, the US government will play judge and jury in any business disputes which US companies would surely raise if they were to lose their investments because of country risks.
In the TPPA, there would be no country risk for US companies and if there is, the country must pay. Country in the end means the people in terms of inflation, currency depreciation, high interest rates and high unemployment, as the errant country must pay a huge sum in US dollars and its government must run a budget deficit to do so.
2. US companies are holding many copyrights and they wish to ensure that they can extract rent out of these copyrights. Areas to attack are music, films, medicine as well as technology. Since modern technology is being used not only to save labour but also for entertainment, it is therefore likely that entertainment for the masses will an expensive hobby.
3. It is obvious that US service companies want to capture a chunk of the professional services industry in Asia. They have already done so under WTO, and it is likely that under TPPA, they will deepen it with legal implications.
4. I agree that worker conditions must improve so that every working person earns a living wage. There should be provisions for housing, medicare and schooling for their children if we want to host workers in this country. This is how a country grows, by taking care of the people who work. Only when we have this baseline drawn properly can this country move up the value chain and be a high-income economy.
My final point is that, if Malaysia really wants to sign the TPPA with the USA, then the government should also pursue such a liberal and liberating policy in our own domestic economic policy where there are no quotas and restrictions for the selected few in our own society. If we are glad to appease ourselves with foreigners, then we must also be prepared to treat all our citizens as equal.