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TTIP proposal a failed attempt to restore public confidence - Lynn Boylan MEP

6 May, 2015 - by Senator Lynn Boylan

Dublin Sinn Féin MEP Lynn Boylan has dismissed the TTIP paper released by EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström today as a failed attempt to address public concerns about investor-state dispute mechanisms (ISDS).

The paper outlines proposals to “institutionalise” the ISDS system by establishing a fixed list of arbitrators and creating a bilateral appeal mechanism modelled on the World Trade Organisation’s Appellate Body.

Ms Boylan said:

“The proposal released today by Cecilia Malmström aims to restore public confidence in the TTIP negotiations between the United States and the EU. It will do no such thing.

 “Today’s proposal is an admission that the ISDS system is deeply flawed. The illegitimacy of ISDS arbitration – in which three corporate lawyers decide whether elected governments should be forced to pay companies compensation for decisions made in the public interest – cannot be overcome by this superficial proposal.

“Tinkering around the edges of the ISDS system does not come close to addressing the grave and well-founded concerns shared by the public on both sides of the Atlantic. Whether the ISDS system has an appeal mechanism or a fixed list of arbitrators is not the issue.

“The result of the Commission’s public consultation on ISDS showed massive opposition to its inclusion in TTIP. But today’s proposal, while revealing that the Commission is under intense public pressure on TTIP, also shows it is determined to keep ISDS as a key part of the trade agreement.

“Instead of trying to reform the ISDS system to make it more palatable to the public, the Commission should listen to the results of its own consultation and scrap ISDS.”

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