July saw the continuation of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiation process. On 8 July, the European Parliament adopted by 436 votes to 241, with 32 abstentions, a resolution containing the European Parliament’s recommendations to the European Commission on the negotiations for the TTIP. Further, the 10th round of negotiations took place in Brussels from 13 to 17 July.
The Resolution includes recommendations to ensure full compliance with the 2005 UNESCO Convention, media freedom and media pluralism and the exclusion of audio-visual services from TTIP. It also asks for that the agreement to not challenge fixed book price systems and the ability of Member States to discriminate against US suppliers in relation to cultural subsidies.
In regards to the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS), one of the most discussed points of the trade agreement, the report asks for a new ISDS system “subject to democratic principles and scrutiny […] and where private interests cannot undermine public policy objectives”.
Culture Action Europe will closely monitor propositions for a modified ISDS system and will oppose any solution that undermines the right of governments to regulate in the public interest. We also reiterate our support to the European Parliament’s resolution 2013/2558(RSP) that excludes culture from the TTIP voted on May 23, 2013.
Upcoming negotiations are schedule for October and November 2015, with an additional round set to take place in December, with the intent of accelerating the process. Negotiators are expect to collect all needed information by December 2015 and hope to signed the agreement before January 2017 [end of President Barak Obama’s term].
We updated CAE’s Little Guide Through The TTIP Negotiation, that introduces what is at stake in TTIP negotiations. We also make available the Commission’s TTIP and Culture text and for further reference, the Draft Opnion of the Committee on Culture and Education for the INTA Committee report (2014/2228(INI), 6 February 2015, Rapporteur: Helga Trüpel). The commission reinforced its transparency policy and provides a maxim of information via its website.