Alison Johnstone, Green MSP for Lothian, has expressed disappointment after the European Parliament’s trade committee today passed a resolution with regard to the ongoing Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations, failing to criticise the controversial ‘investor-state dispute settlement’ (ISDS) mechanism.
TTIP is being negotiated behind closed doors by the EU and USA, and aims to remove barriers to multinational corporations which could enable them to sue governments over profits in offshore corporate courts.
Almost two million people across Europe have signed a European Citizens’ Initiative opposing the secretive trade deal, but MEPs appear to be siding with business lobbyists rather than constituents. In Holyrood, only the Scottish Greens are speaking out in opposition to TTIP, with SNP ministers supporting the principle of the deal, as do Labour.
Alison Johnstone, Green MSP said:
“This resolution was adopted with a large majority, despite the clear opposition to TTIP from citizens all across Europe. It is crucial for the most basic democratic credibility that mounting public concern over this corporate power grab does not continue to go ignored.
“There is a very real danger that governments will be sued if they put up wages or improve employment conditions, while important environmental and public health protections will undoubtedly be weakened by this treaty – undermining decades of political progress towards a fairer and more sustainable world.
“TTIP is an assault on public protections with little evidence of any reward, while the prospect of democratically-elected governments being sued under ISDS will rightly alarm many. It is vital we keep up public pressure on our MEPs and our governments (both Scotland and the UK) to represent the wishes of the public on this.”