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Policy proposals to boost support for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership

By Jared Angle

October 19, 2015

*Note: this article is a hypothetical policy memo for a graduate school assignment and does not necessarily reflect my exact opinions on aspects of the TTIP negotiations.

ACTION SUMMARY

Despite strong indications that the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) will be successfully concluded in the near future, the European Commission must take several steps to ensure the agreement’s ratification by European Union member states.

  • Increase public and media access to TTIP negotiation texts and draft proposals
  • Dismantle the existing investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) framework and establish an investment court system that is equitable, democratically accountable, and publicly accessible
  • Establish a comprehensive food labeling system to protect regional agricultural traditions, identify GMO products, and facilitate consumer choice in European and American markets

GENERAL ASSESSMENT

For the past two years, citizens of EU member states have paid considerable attention to the ongoing TTIP negotiations. Multiple public consultations have demonstrated significant dissatisfaction surrounding the quality and impact of TTIP as it currently stands. This public opposition gives the European Commission renewed incentive to use the next round of negotiations as an opportunity to coordinate with our counterparts at the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) to make key revisions to the proposed text of the agreement in a manner that addresses the concerns of European civil society while also reconciling the economic interests of private individuals and enterprises in each sector.

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At S&D TTIP panel, interest groups warn of trade deal risks

By Jared Angle

BRUSSELS — American and European trade officials met with interest group representatives to discuss potential outcomes of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) in a panel discussion at the European Parliament on Nov. 18.

Hosted by the EP’s centre-left Socialists and Democrats bloc and the International Trade committee, the panel brought Deputy US Trade Representative Michael Punke and EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström together with experts from European and American consumer protection and labor rights groups.

Journalists and panelists at the Nov. 18 discussion on TTIP.

Journalists and panelists at the Nov. 18 discussion on TTIP.

Projected tariff reductions under TTIP will allow companies to pass savings onto consumers and will allow new companies to begin exporting to international markets, according to Malmström.

“We will deliver a TTIP that is good for consumers; not bad, not ugly,” Malmström said.

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US-EU trade agreement could benefit small, medium companies

By Jared Angle

WASHINGTON — The upcoming Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) will provide a boost for small and mid-sized companies (SMEs) in the United States and Europe, according to business leaders and industry analysts in a panel discussion on Nov. 14.

The event, hosted by the Atlantic Council, a Washington-based international relations think tank, coincides with the release of a report examining the agreement’s effect on SMEs.

The report, written by Garrett Workman of the Atlantic Council’s Global Business and Economics Program, identifies major export challenges for SMEs and proposes policy changes that would encourage American and European SMEs to begin exporting products or increase the volume of their existing exports.

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The role of ISDS in contemporary EU trade agreements

By Jared Angle

BRUSSELS — Much of the recent debate over European Union trade negotiations, specifically regarding transatlantic trade agreements with Canada and the United States, has fixated on the inclusion of investor-state dispute settlement, commonly known as ISDS.

Incoming Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström said Sept. 29 that the ISDS chapter of TTIP negotiations is currently frozen, and will be revisited at a later date.

Outgoing Trade Commissioner Karel de Gucht initially stripped ISDS from TTIP negotiations due to German resistance to the legal mechanism, but he insists that ISDS is a crucial investment protection tool that belongs in a finalized version of TTIP, according to Martina Ferracane, a policy analyst at the European Centre for International Political Economy (ECIPE), a think tank based in Brussels.

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Commissioner-Designate Cecilia Malmström: Confirmation Hearing Highlights

Members of the European Parliament, led by the Committee on International Trade, questioned Commissioner Cecilia Malmström (ALDE, Sweden) on her ability to serve as the EU’s 15th trade commissioner during a two-and-a-half hour hearing on Sept. 29.

Malmström, 46, currently holds the Commission’s Home Affairs portfolio, and is expected to begin her second term in the Commission on Nov. 1.

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US, EU negotiators to meet for 7th round of TTIP talks

By Jared Angle

American and European trade representatives will meet next week for a seventh round of negotiations for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), a prospective free trade agreement between the United States and the European Union.

The negotiations, which will take place outside Washington, are scheduled to last from Sept. 29 to Oct. 3, according to the European Commission.

The entrance to Berlaymont, the headquarters of the European Commission, in Brussels.

The entrance to Berlaymont, the headquarters of the European Commission, in Brussels. Photo by Jared Angle.

The US is the EU’s largest trading partner; in 2011, the EU exported €250 billion in goods and services to the US and imported €187 billion.[1] With the tariff reductions and other market liberalization features in a prospective TTIP agreement, trade volume and job growth would increase significantly for both economies.

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US-EU trade deal to boost trans-Atlantic trade, investment

By Jared Angle

Americans import thousands of European products, including famous brands like Fiat, Ikea and Heineken that have become ubiquitous in daily American life. However, the trade of industrial goods, which makes up a large market share in the United States and European Union, can benefit from free trade under an upcoming agreement known as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, also known as TTIP.

TTIP is a proposed U.S.-EU free trade agreement intended to bolster investment and increase movement of goods and services between the two regions, and is projected to generate additional income for the U.S. and the EU, according to Silvia Kofler, head of press and public diplomacy at the European Union Delegation to the United States.

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