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MEP: Commission must increase pressure on American negotiators

Member of the European Parliament Marietje Schaake (ALDE/D66) is glad that the European Commission have finally presented a new system for investment protection in the trade agreement between the European Union and the United States. The new proposal is the result of months of consultations with the European Parliament, the member states, businesses and civil society. It would create a permanent court, with publically appointed judges and complete transparency for investment disputes between the EU and the US. Schaake: "Investment protection in trade agreements is important, but the current form of investment protection is bust. It is good that the Commission wants to make the transition to a transparent system in the negotiations on more economic cooperation with the US. A trade agreement must not undermine democracy and cannot be a backdoor for companies to change legislation." Review all clauses The proposal from the Commission should be a blueprint to set up an international court for investment disputes in the long run, using the model of the World Trade Organisation. Schaake: "The EU can play a leading role in reforming the current fragmented and outdated system of investment protection. European member states together have more than 1,300 agreements containing clauses which need to be reformed. Aside from the US, the Commission needs to engage China and Canada to work towards an international court, because negotiations on bilateral agreements are ongoing with these countries." More concrete results On 21 September, the European Commissioner for Trade, Cecilia Malmström, will travel to the US to speak with her counterpart, Michael Froman. Schaake: "Malmström must increase the pressure on the American negotiators. We need to know whether they are prepared to follow European leadership in the area of investment protection. Furthermore, we need concrete proposals on what the US has to offer in terms of market access. The American market in many sectors, such as public procurement, shipping and aviation, is very closed to European companies. This is unfair and a trade agreement needs to change that." The past negotiating rounds have not yet rendered many concrete results. "We want the Americans to show more commitment and prove that they still want an ambitious trade agreement, that can bring economic growth, strengthen our position in the world and enshrine our high standards", says the MEP.
See also: 12-08-2015 Blog: The real reward in TTIP 07-07-2015 Plenary speech on negotiations for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) 14-06-2015 TTIP – Frequently Asked Questions 09-06-2015 Video: Press briefing by Guy Verhofstadt and Marietje Schaake on TTIP 05-06-2015 Video: ALDE seminar: For a smart Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) 28-05-2015 MEP Schaake reacts to vote report ongoing negotiations on a trade and investment partnership between Europe and the United States 20-05-2015 Media (The Parliament Magazine) – TTIP: EU must be strategic in determining priorities 20-03-2015 MEP: Member States must actively facilitate informed TTIP debate 30-01-2015 MEP: Commission must show more ambition after results ISDS consultation