After long and difficult negotiations, the European Parliament today voted on a resolution on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) where the role of the Socialists and Democrats was crucial. The S&D Group shaped the recommendations for TTIP given by the Parliament to the European Commission.
S&D president Gianni Pittella said:
"We believe that a good and fair TTIP can bring many benefits to European citizens and enterprises in terms of growth and jobs, and will also avoid a global race to the bottom on human rights, environmental and labour standards. But I say a good TTIP, not any TTIP.
"Unlike the liberal view of trade accepted by ALDE and EPP and the protectionist left, the S&D Group wants to use TTIP to harness globalisation and set standards. We successfully introduced all our demands, including the end of ISDS in trade deals. It must be replaced by a new public and transparent system of investment protection, in which private interests cannot undermine public policy and which is subject to public law. And it will set a new principle for all upcoming trade deals."
S&D MEP Bernd Lange, author of the parliamentary resolution and chair of the trade committee, said:
"We are faced with a reality of unprecedented globalisation. Our citizens and workers are in the middle of this process; our companies are an integral part of global value chains.
"It is therefore our democratic duty to shape the rules governing globalisation in order to make it work for the benefit of the people.
"Today we have done just that. We told the Commission that we won't simply accept any trade agreement they put in front of us. We demand an agreement that sets high standards in trade relations. We demand the protection of our citizens' data and our public services. We expect a binding chapter on labour and environmental standards to make sure that trade is based on fair rules instead of social and environmental dumping. We made it clear to the Commission that private arbitration has no future in our trade agreements.
"Some critics have said that we are too ambitious in our demands. I disagree. If you don't fight, you have lost the battle before you have even started."
S&D spokesperson on trade, David Martin MEP, added:
"There is nothing progressive about sticking your head in the sand and hoping trade will regulate itself. The Socialists and Democrats are committed to representing the views of our citizens to the Commission in order to shape TTIP in the direction we want. Today the majority of the Parliament agreed with us: exclude public services, safeguard our environment and food standards, introduce binding labour standards and bring an end to secret tribunals. We will continue to make these demands for the TTIP negotiations. Our values must be at the heart of a European economic growth strategy."
See our document detailing all the S&D achievements in the TTIP resolution http://www.socialistsanddemocrats.eu/sites/default/files/S%26D%20achievements%20in%20TTIP.pdf