TTIP ne­go­tia­tors to push ahead de­spite set­backs

The Myanmar Times - - Business -

NE­GO­TIA­TORS on the am­bi­tious transat­lantic trade treaty have pledged to push ahead de­spite ris­ing anti-free trade sen­ti­ment and the re­jec­tion of new trade deals by US and Euro­pean politi­cians.

End­ing their 15th round of ne­go­ti­a­tions in New York last week, US and Euro­pean Union ne­go­tia­tors said they had made “sig­nif­i­cant progress” as the talks on the Transat­lantic Trade and In­vest­ment Part­ner­ship (TTIP) hone in on some of the most dif­fi­cult is­sues.

But cru­cially, with some politi­cians run­ning for top lead­er­ship po­si­tions in the United States and Europe bash­ing new trade deals as bad for work­ers and con­sumers, the two sides said they re­main com­mit­ted to reach­ing a deal.

“We have heard some scep­ti­cal voices about TTIP lately, but I want to em­pha­sise that the US re­mains fully en­gaged in these ne­go­ti­a­tions and is as com­mit­ted as ever to their suc­cess,” said chief US ne­go­tia­tor for the United States Dan Mul­laney.

“We re­main ready to move for­ward on an agree­ment that is in our mu­tual eco­nomic in­ter­est.”

Ig­na­cio Gar­cia-Bercero, the chief ne­go­tia­tor for the EU, stressed that the TTIP is a po­tent way to strengthen ties and cre­ate jobs.

“The rea­sons to con­tinue these talks are as strong as they were three years ago when we started ne­go­ti­at­ing this big­gest bi­lat­eral trade agree­ment in the world,” he said.

“In this un­cer­tain world, hav­ing close eco­nomic part­ners could help Europe to shape glob­al­i­sa­tion ac­cord­ing to our high stan­dards and ac­cord­ing to our vi­sion.”

The two am­bi­tious trade deals pushed by US Pres­i­dent Barack Obama, TTIP and the Trans Pa­cific Part­ner­ship, both ap­pear im­per­iled by the hot fight be­tween Don­ald Trump and Hil­lary Clin­ton to suc­ceed him.

The deals aim to lower trade and in­vest­ment bar­ri­ers and har­monise reg­u­la­tions, but both have at­tracted deep crit­i­cism for erod­ing lo­cal busi­ness and con­sumer pro­tec­tions and po­ten­tially grant­ing multi­na­tional cor­po­ra­tions too much power. –

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