The European Parliament has made recommendations about the TTIP negotiations that include vital safeguards for public health and send a clear signal that the controversial Investor-to-State Dispute Settlement system (ISDS) must be reformed. As the European Parliament will have a final say on TTIP, it is crucial that MEPs have set down some red lines assuring citizens that fundamental European standards that protect health and preventing disease will not be compromised in EU trade deals. The European Parliament has clearly signalled that TTIP must not take precedence over the right of the EU and national governments to regulate in the public interest.
The European Parliament has also clearly stated that the existing ISDS is not fit for purpose and that “business as usual” is not an option. Specifically, it has approved an amendment calling for the replacement of the current ISDS with a new system” where “private interests cannot undermine public policy objectives”.
As the General Secretary of the European Public Health Alliance pointed out “The MEPs are adding their voices to 150,000 citizens who said No to ISDS in a public consultation earlier this year. Now it’s time for the Commission to finally listen to the public and do away with an fatally flawed, undemocratic, opaque private arbitration system which allows companies to sue sovereign governments for protecting us from dangers to our health”.
For more information about TTIP and public health, go to www.epha.org