Greece Today | 10 June 2015
SYRIZA says Europarliament must reject TTIP
Ruling coalition leader SYRIZA on Tuesday urged European Parliament deputies to give a clear ’no’ to the signature of the TransAtlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) when the issue is discussed in the European Parliament on Wednesday.
The party called for a negative recommendation to the European Commission on this issue, pointing to provisions under the agreement such as the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) mechanism that would allow private companies to seek compensation if a sovereign state changed legislation relating to their investments, while the validity of their claims will not be examined by each country’s courts but by an international arbitration mechanism that would not be subject to democratic controls.
According to SYRIZA, ISDS undermined economic democracy by treating the rights of peoples and their elected representatives as equal to the rights of an economic oligarchy, essentially amounting to an exemption for large multinationals from democratic controls and continuing a conversion of western democracies to states where elections cannot bring about changes to economic policy.
The party also noted that the TTIP would not just affect issues such as tariffs but also laws on protecting the environment and public health, confining these to the "minimum common denominator" that applies in both the EU and the U.S. and essentially depriving countries of the right to regulate markets in their own territory.
Rejecting TTIP as "yet another attempt to further spread the neoliberal agenda," SYRIZA said its signature would be a significant regression for the countries of Europe and North America and called on MEPs, as well as the Hellenic Parliament, to reject the proposed treaty.