EU Member States in the European Council have today agreed to start negotiating a new EU-US trade deal.
The talks were de facto approved despite promises by French President Macron and EU Trade Commissioner Malmström that the EU would not negotiate a trade agreement with countries that have not signed the Paris agreement on climate change.
This Wednesday, 13th February, Members of the European Parliament will vote on a controversial investment deal between the EU and Singapore. This treaty is very similar to the investment chapters of CETA, the unpopular trade deal between the EU and Canada which outraged people all over Europe in 2015 and 2016.
The US Congress has given the green light to start new trade negotiations with the European Union, raising concerns around potential impacts on EU agriculture.
While the European Commission is aiming for an industry-only deal, the US government is strongly pushing for agriculture to be included in any agreement. This would likely open up the same controversies around food safety and agriculture tariffs that helped sink previous EU-US trade talks.
The EU needs to guarantee to its citizens that it will not start negotiating on Europe’s food safety standards with the US. This call comes from Friends of the Earth Europe as foreign affairs ministers meet today to discuss progress on EU-US trade talks.
Last week, governments met at the United Nations in Vienna to discuss potential changes to the ISDS (Investor-State Dispute Settlement) system. This parallel justice system, benefitting multinationals and elite corporate lawyers, has been widely criticised around the world for its damaging impacts on the environment, on democracy and on public budgets.
This week, world leaders will meet at the United Nations in Geneva to negotiate a historic international treaty to ensure companies respect human rights and the environment in their global operations – the UN Treaty on Business and Human Rights. Representatives of the European Union will be attending the opening and closing session, but will not participating in discussions on the content of the treaty text. Why this abstention when we are talking about protecting people's rights against damaging corporations, about giving victims of corporate abuse access to justice?
Today – on a global day of action to end poverty, reduce inequalities, and tackle climate change – a coalition of civil society organisations has launched a manifesto with core demands for the political leadership of the EU and the candidates in the 2019 European Elections.
Friends of the Earth Europe's new analysis of the EU-Indonesia CEPA trade deal gives it a score of 4.5/20 for sustainability
While public discourse is focussing on tariff fights between US and China, the EU Commission continues to negotiate non-transparent and harmful trade deals.
Tomorrow, April 27, German Chancellor Merkel will visit Trump to discuss trade policies and next steps to avoid an escalating trade war with the US.
US President Trump has given the EU a one-month exemption from new measures to increase import tariffs on steel and aluminium entering the US market- until May 1st. The EU wants this exemption to be permanent and is already discussing a mini deal with the US.
While the USA and China are stepping into one the potential biggest fights on trade measures in decades, Friends of the Earth Europe is presenting concrete proposals for an innovative trade agenda that serves citizens and the environment.