Corporate Europe Observatory

Exposing the power of corporate lobbying in the EU

Commission sued for privileged access

Today, Corporate Europe Observatory launched a legal action, suing the EU’s executive in the EU General Court for withholding documents related to the EU’s free trade talks with India. The Commission is accused of discriminating in favour of corporate lobby groups and of violating the EU’s transparency rules.

  • Dansk
  • Nederlands
  • English
  • Suomi
  • Français
  • Deutsch
  • Ελληνικά
  • Italiano
  • Bokmål
  • Polski
  • Portuguese
  • Română
  • Slovenščina
  • Español
  • Svenska

The case concerns 17 documents including meeting reports, emails and a letter, which the Commission’s trade department (DG Trade) sent to industry associations including BusinessEurope and the Confederation of the European Food and Drink Industry (CIAA). While these corporate lobby groups received full versions of the documents, the Commission only released censored versions to Corporate Europe Observatory, arguing that full disclosure would undermine the EU’s international relations. The censored sections relate to allegedly sensitive information about priorities and strategies in the ongoing trade talks with Indiaincluding issues such as tariff cuts, services, investment and government procurement liberalisation and health standards.

What is at stake is whether the Commission can continue its practice of granting big business privileged access to its trade policy-making process by sharing information that is withheld from the public. This practice not only hampers well-informed and meaningful public participation in EU trade policy-making, it also leads toa trade policy that, while catering for big business needs, is harmful to people and the environment in the EU and the world.

Read the full article and one of the censored documents here:

 
Somebody forwarded Corporate Europe Observatory this invite to a select cocktail party on 17 July 2014, organised by the Transatlantic Business Council at the Representation of the Free State of Bavaria to the EU. Another occasion for big business representatives to meet US & EU TTIP negotiators in a pleasant and discreet environment...
No sector has lobbied the European Commission more when it was preparing negotiations on the proposed EU-US trade deal (TTIP) than the agribusiness sector, according to data published today by CEO in a series of research-based infographics.
Do you wonder which businesses are pushing most for the proposed EU-US trade deal TTIP? Or where they come from? And who has most access to EU negotiators? CEO’s at-a-glance info-graphics shine a light on the corporate lobby behind the TTIP talks.
Food is on the table at the negotiations for the EU-US trade deal the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). From a look at their lobbying demands, the agribusiness industry seems to regard the treaty as a perfect weapon to counter existing and future food regulations.
CEO is looking for an experienced, creative and dynamic media outreach coordinator. The position is permanent and based in Brussels. Deadline to apply: Tuesday September 23rd 2014
In the run-up to the European parliament hearings with the commissioners-designate, Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO) shows how the candidates from Portugal, Latvia and the Czech Republic have serious questions to answer regarding possible conflicts of interest and their recent career or political backgrounds.
Here are some examples of the blurry line between private business and public office that have characterised the Spanish nominee for the Climate Action and Energy Commissioner Arias Cañete’s career.
This must-watch film is now online. The film shows how corporations and actors within the Commission are teaming up to demolish a major piece of public health legislation.

Corporate Europe Forum