Rotorua MP Todd McClay will sign off the controversial Trans Pacific Partnership for the government as Trade Minister, but his parliamentary colleague Fletcher Tabuteau is not happy about the deal.
Yesterday, Mr McClay announced the deal would be signed at SkyCity Hotel in Auckland on February 4, marking the end of the negotiating process.
"Following signature, all 12 countries will be able to begin their respective domestic ratification processes and will have up to two years to complete that before the agreement enters into force," he said.
But Mr Tabuteau, New Zealand First's list MP based in Rotorua and who holds his party's trade portfolio, said the TPP was part of a "cynical geopolitical agenda" and most of the supposed benefits would take decades to come into effect.
He said income inequality for all member nations would increase, "with those small benefits going only to the profits of the large multi-nationals".
He said non-trade elements, which made up the bulk of the deal, would compromise New Zealand sovereignty, the environment, and the health and prosperity of New Zealanders and New Zealand businesses.
• Rotorua joins protest action over TPP
"Then there are all the compromises we have to make. On the cost of our medicines, our books and music, for example, will increase over time.
"This Prime Minister and Trade Minister, who have operated under a cloak of secrecy, must not sign this trade deal," Mr Tabuteau said.
Waiariki MP and Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell said once he and his party had digested the contents of the deal he would be in a better position to comment.
"There's still a lot of water to go under the bridge. But, where there's issues of sovereignty rights or treaty rights being questioned then you can take it from me that we will not be supporting it," he said.
However, Mr McClay said there were many good reasons the deal should be signed.
"Trade is critical to growth and prosperity in New Zealand - particularly in Rotorua - and free trade agreements level the playing field internationally for New Zealand businesses, large and small.
"There has been a lot of misinformation generated by opponents of free trade. My message to them is that this is a good agreement for the people of Rotorua and New Zealand. Signing this agreement will have an immediate economic benefit."
Trans Pacific Partnership:
* Will be signed off by Rotorua MP and Trade Minister Todd McClay
* Signing will take place at SkyCity Hotel in Auckland on February 4
* Government "information roadshow" to get underway around the country