Sinn Féin MEP for the Midlands North West and Sinn Féin spokesperson on TTIP, Matt Carthy, has stated that the vote in the European Parliament’s International Trade Committee on TTIP this week proved that the decision to postpone the plenary vote previously was nothing more than a delaying tactic by the European establishment.
“At the June plenary, MEPs and the European Commission became acutely aware of the level of opposition to TTIP right across Europe as over 200 amendments were tabled to the report due to come before Parliament for a vote.
“Instead of tackling the issues head on in a democratic forum and allowing the MEPs to debate and vote on the issues, the European Parliament President referred the issue back to the Trade Committee.
“However, European Parliament rules prevented the Trade Committee from omitting any of the submitted amendments despite, no doubt, the wishes of members like Fine Gael’s Seán Kelly. Sinn Féin predicted that this would be the case and this week’s developments have exposed the antics in plenary as nothing more than a fudge and delaying tactic.
“What all of this demonstrates is that the European Institutions have completely underestimated the strength of opposition to TTIP and are desperately scrambling to cover up that fact.
“It also means that we have wasted an opportunity to have a debate on the issues around TTIP – the first time that TTIP was actually due to come before the European Parliament for a vote despite two years of negotiations.
“The real victim here is democracy – It has been indicated that the schedule for July plenary will not allow this vote to take place therefore it would seem that the earliest opportunity for MEPs to have a say on TTIP will be September 2015.
“ In the meantime I, and my Sinn Féin colleagues, along with hundreds of other MEPs, will continue to ensure that the real concerns of citizens in Ireland and throughout Europe are heard by EU leaders.”