How is big business using the EU's trade and investment agreements to sideline people, planet and democracy?
With the fifth round of EU-US negotiations under way this week in Arlington/USA, more than 120 organisations have rejected the corporate agenda in the TTIP negotiations in a joint statement released today.
Over 250 civil society organisations and networks including Corporate Europe Observatory have today called on the European Commission to open up the EU-US trade negotiations for public scrutiny.
At the end of March, the European Commission launched a public consultation over its plan to enshrine far-reaching rights for foreign investors in the EU-US trade deal currently being negotiated. In the face of fierce opposition to these investor super-rights, the Commission is trying to convince the public that these do not endanger democracy and public policy. See through the sweet-talk with Corporate Europe Observatory’s guide to investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS).
This 8-minute film presents some of the dangers of the investor rights within the proposed EU-US trade deal.
Today, a European alliance of over 50 civil society organisations will launch the Alternative Trade Mandate pledge campaign, calling on European Parliament election candidates to make EU trade and investment policy serve people and the planet, not just the profit of a few large corporations.
March 10-14th saw the latest round of the highly controversial EU-US free trade negotiations take place in Brussels. But while the industry's 50 leading CEO's, known collectively as the European Roundtable of Industrialists, proclaimed it their responsibility to ensure the deal was passed 'with as little noise as possible', citizens from both sides of the Atlantic had other, rather noisier ideas for the Belgian capital.
A trade deal between the EU and the US risks opening the backdoor for the expansion of fracking in Europe and the US, reveals a new report by Corporate Europe Observatory and other groups. As part of the deal currently being negotiated, energy companies could be allowed to take governments to private international tribunals if they attempt to regulate or ban fracking and the dangerous exploitation of unconventional fossil fuels. Campaigners are urging the EU not to include such rights in trade deals.
While Commissioner De Gucht claims that “there is nothing secret” about the ongoing EU-US trade talks, notes of Commission meetings with business lobbyists released to CEO under the EU’s freedom of information law were heavily censored.
The European Commission's freeze in negotiations over dangerous corporate rights in the EU-US trade deal (TTIP) announced this week is an important first success for the growing anti-TTIP movement. But a closer look at the Commission’s line shows that it might just be a smart trick to dispel concerns.
The European Commission has repeatedly promised civil society that the ongoing Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations with the United States will not lead to a race to the bottom in terms of environmental protection, health and safety standards and consumer rights. The fear has always been that Europe would be forced to lower the bar to create a “level playing field” between the US rules and generally more robust EU regulations.
On 7 October, the second round of negotiations for a far-reaching transatlantic trade deal will begin in Brussels. Amidst calls for greater openness and public participation, the European Commission has gone into propaganda mode, promoting myths about the transparency and accountability of the talks. See through its feel-good rhetoric with Corporate Europe Observatory’s myth-busting guide to secrecy, corporate influence and lack of accountability in the transatlantic trade negotiations.
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