Frihandel i media vecka 8

Det har varit dåligt med svenska nyheter om TTIP den här veckan. Här kommer istället några utländska klipp.



Är TTIP i kris frågar sig Deutche Welle. Enligt Bernd Lange (tysk socialdemokrat) och rapportör om TTIP är det amerikanerna som har tappat tempot:

”This week, the 12th round of negotiations is taking place in Brussels. Lange, a Social Democrat from the German state of Lower Saxony, believes the talks are not making much headway. Of the 25 chapters up for negotiation, the Americans have taken a clear position on less than half, Lange told DW.

”TTIP is in crisis,” he said. ”But only one of the negotiating partners is sick: the United States. They clearly have to step up their efforts and make a move towards the Europeans.”
That is not how US Trade Representative Michael Froman sees it. ”We have made good progress in the past six months,” he said ahead of new negotiations on Monday.
The disagreement is likely to continue as they have yet to tackle some of the most contentious issues. For instance, where and how should investors settle disputes with states? Which industry standards will apply, for example in mechanical engineering? And what are the procedures for transatlantic public procurement? All these problems have yet to be solved.

Negotiations are currently in what insiders call the ”middle game.” First, the uncontroversial topics are dealt with, while tough issues are put off.
But for TTIP expert Bernd Lange, this is a risky strategy. Negotiators are running out of time, he warned. They have until July to produce a so-called consolidated text. If they miss that deadline, closing the deal before US President Barack Obama leaves office will be nearly impossible, Lange predicted.

Again, US Trade Representative Michael Fromann disagreed, arguing that a deal could be reached with or without Obama.
But pulling that off would require a lot of luck, said EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström: ”It will not be easy.”
In fact, with the US elections looming on the horizon, the situation is only likely to get worse, cautioned Lange. If the increasingly nationalistic Republicans get the upper hand following the November vote, they are likely to block new free trade agreements. If Democrats win, things won’t necessarily look up either. Many in the party are skeptical of free trade and worry about investor protection and workers’ rights.”



Irish News tror att TTIP kommer att vara till fördel för småföretagen på Irland:

”SMALL businesses in Northern Ireland are “certain” to enjoy some economic benefits if negotiators can finally get the world’s largest free trade agreement over the line by the end of this year, officials in Brussels hinted yesterday.

A 12th round of high-level Europe-America trade talks are taking place in the Belgium capital all this week, aimed at paving the way for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) to be formally set into law.

No deadline on completion of the controversy-shrouded treaty, which will impact on 320 million people in the US and 500m in Europe, has been declared.

But officials on both sides of the Atlantic are tentatively suggesting at a done-deal before the next US President is sworn in on January 20 2017.

Even though the American election campaign has no direct impact on both parties’ willingness to conclude the deal, any new administration would take time to set its own priorities, meaning that significant time – possibly up to a year – would be lost.

Analysts have suggested TTIP – which would affect a number of areas including banking regulations, food standards and environmental laws – will be worth around £10 billion a year to the UK economy, or £400 per family, and will revive the entire European economy.”



Det är inte bara svenska tidningar som bedriver kampanjjournalistik. ”EU told ExxonMobil that TTIP would aid global expansion, documents reveal” skriver The Guardian i en artikel ganska typisk för tidningen. Den har genom EU:s regler för öppenhet försetts med två och ett halvt år gamla mötesanteckningar  där dåvarande handelskommissionären Karel de Gucht säger att TTIP förmodligen kommer att påverka världens handelssystem så att oljebolaget Exxon får det lättare att hantera handelshinder Afrika och Sydamerika. Exakt hur det kommer att ske eller vad som skulle vara anmärkningsvärt är oklart. Men för att vara på den säkra sidan låter tidningen vänsteraktivisten John Hilary kommentera saken. Hilary börjar omedelbart tala om ”korruption”, trots att det alltså bara handlar om ett diskussionsmöte som protokollförts och offentliggjorts:

“TTIP is perhaps more relevant as setting a precedent vis-a-vis third countries than governing trade and investment bilaterally,” the paper says. “We think that this third country element is in the interest of the energy sector, and especially globally active companies like Shell or Exxonmobil. After all, companies like Shell or Exxonmobil face the same trade barriers when doing business in Africa, in Russia or in South America.”

The commission was in effect saying that once the trade deal was in place, other countries outside it would be progressively forced to adopt the same measures, making it easier for companies such as ExxonMobil to expand into their markets.

John Hilary, the executive director of the campaign group War on Want, accused the commission of overstepping its mandate in the talks. “It is tantamount to corruption that the European commission should be prepared to work hand in glove with such vested interests in crafting deals that will have a profound effect on our environment,” he told the Guardian.”








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