The European Commission is currently negotiating the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) with the United States. This trade deal threatens to reduce the social and environmental rights of people living in the US and the EU, in the interests of big business. A central aspect of this threat comes from plans to introduce “regulatory cooperation” between the negotiating partners.
Equally dangerous is the European Commission’s so-called “Better Regulation” agenda, which is an internal process that pre-dates the EU-US trade talks. “Better Regulation” is promoted as being about cutting unnecessary administrative burdens or red tape at the EU level. In reality it threatens essential environmental safeguards and citizens’ rights.
Both processes are creating obstacles and delays for decision-makers who want to introduce new regulations, and they risk creating “regulatory chill” as law makers are discouraged from introducing new measures in the public interest.