The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is a proposed trade agreement between the EU and the US which is being negotiated in secret. It is so secretive that even our Members of the European Parliament struggle to gain access to the details of it.
From what we do know of it, TTIP is bad news for public services, food standards, workers’ rights and many other things.
If agreed, TTIP will give multinational corporations the power to sue democratically elected Governments should they make a decision that could impact on the companies’ profits.
Concerns about this are not misguided, they are based on the experiences of existing trade agreements from across the globe.
For example, big tobacco companies in Australia sued the Government there for introducing plain packaging on cigarettes.
In Argentina the Government were sued by Energy Companies when it introduced a price freeze to protect working families following the nation’s financial crash.
TTIP is a threat to all our public services including the NHS. It would not only open up all public services, such as education and local government services, to privatisation - it could also make it virtually impossible to bring services, such as our railways, back into public control, without those who take such decisions being sued by large, powerful corporations.
That’s why Joe opposes it and convinced North Ayrshire Council to oppose it outright.