Molly Scott Cato, Green MEP for the South West, received applause in the European Parliament today when she had an opportunity to speak against the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) trade deal. Greens have been at the forefront of the campaign against this EU-US deal. Dr Scott Cato told MEPs:
“We are the democratic arm of the EU institutions. Our job is to stand up for what the citizens of Europe want and I can tell you very clearly that they don’t want TTIP. Well over two million have already petitioned the commission to stop negotiating in their name. The only reason there aren’t more is that people haven’t heard about it.
“TTIP is a threat to our public services and our democratic rights. It threatens to undermine the standards we have fought for in areas such as air quality, water quality, safe food, and animal welfare. It threatens the livelihoods of farmers in the South West and across the continent.
“More trade is not the solution to our problems. It is the way to allow corporations to control more of our economy and that is why they are driving this agenda.
“As a continent we are currently facing massive crises in Greece, with migrants in the Mediterranean, with conflict in the Middle East and Ukraine and with climate change. These are the problems we should be focusing on, not wasting money on negotiations for a treaty that only serves corporations.”
Tomorrow, MEPs have the chance to vote on TTIP in a plenary session of the European Parliament. Greens continue to oppose TTIP and are particularly concerned about the investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism, which would potentially allow corporations to sue governments over legislation that impacts on their profits. Greens will support an amendment calling for the exclusion of ISDS from TTIP.