CAMPAIGNERS ARE celebrating after a planned vote at the European Union on the controversial Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) was postponed on Weds, 10 June.
Food safety is a major stumbling block for TTIP, which aims to reduce regulatory barriers to big business trade between the EU and the US to create one of the world’s biggest free trade zones. This is because existing EU and US regulations differ widely, for example on issues such as GM, pesticides and growth promoting hormones in beef.
Officially, the vote was postponed after 200 amendments were tabled, and more time was needed to allow the Trade Committee to consider the amendments. However, many MEPs and campaign groups believe the real reason the president of the European Parliament postponed the deal was to prevent MEPs voting in favour of scrapping the most contested parts of the deal.
The regulations covered by the deal include food safety law, labour rights, environmental legislation, banking regulations and the sovereign powers of individual nations.
The agreement also includes a clause called the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS). This has caused huge concern as it could allow corporations to sue Governments in secret courts if a government passed laws which limited a corporation’s profits or activity.