Corporate Europe Observatory

Exposing the power of corporate lobbying in the EU

  • Dansk
  • NL
  • EN
  • FI
  • FR
  • DE
  • EL
  • IT
  • NO
  • PL
  • PT
  • RO
  • SL
  • ES
  • SV

The strange case of the shy lobbyists: why no-one will admit to lobbying for TTIP

It is a strange fact, but if you believe the pronouncements of PR and law firms in Brussels and the rest of the EU, almost none of them are lobbying on one of the biggest issues of the day, the prospective EU-US free trade agreement Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership or TTIP.

The full report: shy_lobbyists.pdf

A naive observer might wonder why all these lobbyists and lawyers would miss out on what must be some of the most lucrative contracts around: pushing corporate interests in the TTIP negotiations, while selling the controversial trade deal to an increasingly concerned public.

In reality, this shyness to declare pro-TTIP lobbying is highly unlikely to reflect the real situation, given that private interest groups overwhelmingly dominated the European Commission's TTIP consultations: 9 out of 10 lobby contacts during the preparatory phase of the negotiations were with companies and corporate lobby groups (see here and here). It's clear from these figures that someone certainly is lobbying heavily for TTIP, but who?

In summer 2014 CEO undertook a survey to try and establish which law firms and lobby consultancies were willing to be transparent about their lobbying on TTIP. The shyness over disclosure was notable: no law firms admitted to doing any lobbying on TTIP at all. Overall, 66 per cent of lobbyists and law firms CEO contacted refused to say whether they were lobbying on TTIP and 88 per cent refused to say who they were lobbying on behalf of. (See Appendix for CEO's detailed survey of law and lobby firms on the issue.)

The fact that the prospective EU-US free trade agreement is only growing in controversy may be a large reason why lobbyists continue to be so reluctant to talk.

The full report: shy_lobbyists.pdf

Tag: 
 

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

A deregulation agenda is sweeping through the Commission & member states, particularly pushed by the UK.

The recent leak of many parts of TTIP, allowing us for the first time to read the negotiating position of the US, confirms our most serious concerns.

Dangerous attacks against regulations protecting public interest wouldn't be prevented by 'new' proposals.

Despite growing concerns among the European public, the new EU proposal on regulatory cooperation in TTIP does nothing to address the upcoming democratic threats.

A few weeks after the May coup against Dilma Rousseff by conservative parties backed by the country's largest corporations, Brazil's “interim” government, led by Michel Temer, signed an emergency loan to the State of Rio de Janeiro to help finance infrastructure for the 2016 Olympics. The bailout was conditional to selling off the State's public water supply and sanitation company, the Companhia Estadual de Águas e Esgotos (Cedae). 

When we interviewed City Councillor and chair of Rio’s Special Committee on the Water Crisis Renato Cinco, in December 2015, he was already warning against such privatisation threats and provided important background information on the water situation in Rio.

José Manuel Barroso's move to Goldman Sachs has catapulted the EU’s revolving door problem onto the political agenda. It is symbolic of the excessive corporate influence at the highest levels of the EU.

Corporate Europe Observatory, Friends of the Earth and LobbyControl today wrote to Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament, calling on him to investigate Angelika Nieber MEP over a possible conflict of interest.

CEO presents some first reflections on the UK's vote for Brexit.

 
 
 
 
 
-- placeholder --
 
 
 

The corporate lobby tour