State of Play
EU/US Trade negotiations are still very far from finalised. No decision has yet been made on any part of the agreement. I suspect progress will slow in advance of the 2016 US Presidential elections, with any progress thereafter affected by the result.
When the negotiators finally agree on the text of the TTIP agreement that is only the beginning of the ratification process. Any final decision would be subject to the approval of the 28 EU National Parliaments and must command a majority of MEPs voting in the European Parliament.
In response to constituent concerns I have sought assurances from European Commission negotiators and the European Commission’s Director General for Trade on a number of issues regarding the negotiations. You can read the correspondence in the documents at the foot of this page.
To read more about the Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS), please click here.
The value of a free trade agreement with the US
A new EU-US trade agreement has the potential to deliver real, tangible benefits for workers and companies in the EU and the UK, enabling businesses large and small to grow through better market access and reducing red tape, giving consumers lower costs through reduced tariffs. The aim is to increase trade and investment by unleashing the untapped potential of a truly transatlantic marketplace.
We all have the chance to improve global trade by bringing together two parts of the world renowned for high consumer protection and to help to achieve greater regulatory compatibility, thus paving the way for setting global standards on a range of different issues. This will not water down EU regulation for consumers or for the environment, not now or in the future. Encouraging regulators to co-operate does not remove our right to set different regulatory standards.
Going forward I will continue to update this page when there are further developments.
Here are some other useful documents:
Scottish MEP video evidence session to the the Scottish Parliament's European and External Relations Committee as well as the Official Report of the Evidence (worth noting that Labour MEP David Martin, who sits on the International Trade Committee, is quite clear when he tells the Committee (09.45) 'I personally do not believe that there is any threat to the health service as a result of the TTIP. There has been a lot of talk in the press that it will damage our healthcare, but I do not believe that that will be the case')
The referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU will take place on the 23 June. I believe it will be a once in a generation, perhaps even once in a lifetime, event. The question to be posed in the referendum is straightforward, the answer, a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no.’ However, the relationship between the UK and the EU is anything but simple.READ MORE