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Why we should stop TTIP

The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is a proposed free trade agreement between the EU and the USA. Hiding behind widely contested arguments about boosting employment, TTIP would in fact favour corporate interests and weaken health, consumer, worker and environmental protections. We listed some arguments against this treaty[:]1. Negotiators represent corporate interests. Not our interests.

2. Negotiations take place in secret and citizens and elected representatives do not have free access to the working documents.

3. TTIP will lower food, health and environmental standards, and diminish regulations aimed at protecting citizens. Think about the ban on chlorinated poultry or the obligation to label GMOs in the EU… Those safety measures could easily be challenged by corporate interests.

4. People, communities and countries should have the right to decide for themselves what they want to consume and how they want to produce. TTIP stands in direct contrast with this notion.

5. TTIP negotiators are pushing for the implementation of the Investors State Dispute Settlement (ISDS), which grants transnational corporations the power to sue individual countries directly for loss of (expected) profits as a result of public policy decisions. If a country for instance bans fracking to conduct studies about its impact, a company could sue this country for the profit loss, at the expense of the public. This is not just dangerous but also unconstitutional as this mechanism provides VIP-treatment to companies.

6. Thousands of jobs are promised, as well as a positive effect on economic growth. This effect is however small and highly uncertain. Moreover, striving for economic growth and replacing regulations with the rules of large corporations is not going to help us create a better society.

TTIP = investors privileges over public interest and democracy. Let’s stop it!

(text of the flyers distributed during a protest in Den Haag on May 19 2014)