TTIP secrecy – what are the bureaucrats trying to hide from us?

Campaigners say TTIP threatens public services and could allow corporations to challenge tax changes that hit their profits [Image: Wiktor Dabkowski/dpa/Corbis].

If the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) really did represent a good deal for UK citizens, the Conservative Government and the EU would be shouting about it from the rooftops.

They’re not, so we can conclude that it isn’t.

Fortunately, we all still have plenty of time to kill this undemocratic attempt to stamp on our freedoms.

Negotiations on the deal are unlikely to be finished until 2019 or 2020, and then it will have to be ratified by all 28 EU member states and both houses of the US Congress.

Of course, a true-blue Tory government would happily vote through an agreement that hands over our national sovereignty to international corporations, stamps on workers’ rights and inflicts low-quality merchandise on the public at a high price – which is what TTIP currently represents.

Therefore, it is to be hoped that the 2020 general election takes place before any agreement can go to the vote in the UK Parliament, and we get a reasonable government that is prepared to listen to the will of the people.

This isn’t a ‘done deal’. It can be beaten. But there is a long way to go.

MPs have won access to documents covering controversial and secretive trade talks between Brussels and Washington, but can only take a pencil and paper into the room where the files can be viewed.

Confidentiality rules mean no electronic devices – including phones, tablet and laptop computers, or cameras – are allowed in the room at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) in Westminster. This is fuelling concerns about a “cloak of secrecy” surrounding the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations between the EU and the US government.

UK business minister Anna Soubry agreed to provide the room in BIS’s offices on the condition that MPs keep the TTIP documents private. Soubry said pressure on Brussels officials from EU governments had won the concession, but the department was obliged to maintain secrecy.

Green MP Caroline Lucas said that access to documents on “this hugely significant trade deal” was necessary before UK parliamentarians were asked to vote on it. “But the bad news is that a cloak of secrecy still surrounds TTIP. If the same rules apply here in the UK as they do in Brussels, which is what the minister is implying, then MPs will be bound by a confidentiality agreement if they want to see the text,” Lucas said. “This opaque process, which shuts citizens out of this crucial debate, is profoundly undemocratic.”

Source: MPs can view TTIP files – but take only pencil and paper with them | Business | The Guardian

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8 thoughts on “TTIP secrecy – what are the bureaucrats trying to hide from us?

  1. Dez

    Where is this transparency and open government SS Camoron promised the voting population? This is a major impact from many points of view and shifts power far away from democracy and into the hands of the commercial lizards and elite for complete universal power.

  2. Gary Aronsson

    You believe a “True Blue Tory Government” would have no trouble voting through what is undoubtedly an attempt to enslave the British people to Corporate Fascism. And I wouldn’t argue with this conclusion in any way except to suggest that they would do it with wild enthusiasm.

    But I do hope nobody is going to suggest that a Labour Government wouldn’t behave in EXACTLY the same way! Let us not pretend that our last experience of 13 years of Labour Government was one in which the BRITISH poor were uppermost in the minds of Blair and Brown when they increased immigration by over 1000% and flooded Britain with an endless supply of cheap scab labour!

    It must be remembered that these last two are now raking in a fortune in the employ of American financial institutions who for reasons beyond all comprehension seem to think that two Ex-Labour Prime Ministers who have NEVER had ANY employment unrelated to politics,can bring something special to the running of a BANK!

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      The version of Labour to which you are referring is not Corbyn’s Labour – as you must agree.
      Labour is enjoying renewed popularity because of Corbyn. His vision will bring Labour back to government – if the party reverts to New Labour ways, it won’t win.
      So Labour won’t do as you suggest.
      Your claim about Blair and Brown is propaganda, as evidenced by your use of the word “scab”.

  3. casalealex

    If the little we have been made aware of. regarding the implications of TTIP, is any thing to go by, I can’t help but surmise there is some truth in the theory and possible implementation of The New World Order….

    1. Malcolm MacINTYRE-READ

      Unfortunately I do not think the “New” World Order is that New. Over the last 50 years or so, there has been a steady increase in the number of exposures of “deals” between politicians of all persuasions and corporations, including banks, and not just in the UK. Power corrupts and corruption provides power.

      Tribalism is a major problem if hoping for national well-being.

  4. mohandeer

    Hate to state the obvious, but Farage has been exposing the many secrets of the TTIP as have a few Labour MEP’s. The TTIP is pretty much the same as the TPA’s the US has inflicted on other countries dumb enough to enter into these deals. The problem is, ALL negotiating within these deals MUST be done in secret – it is a pre-condition, as a certain person has been trying to tell the British Public. Corporatism, back slapping and back room/back pocket deals are what the TPP and TPA’s are about. Anyone not at the table when the deals are under way, will be led to believe they are missing out. No governments are even allowed to tell their fellow parliamentarians what has been agreed in these back room deals let alone the public, if that doesn’t send alarm bells ringing, I don’t know what will.

Comments are closed.