New consultation begins on TTIP’s economic impact

All EU member states’ economies will grow as a result of a completed new trade agreement between the US and the EU, with exports from Europe to the US predicted to rise by 27%, according to a draft interim report on the proposed agreement which has been published today.

Compiled by the independent Ecorys consultancy, and funded by the European Commission, the new report consists of 400 pages of a Sustainability Impact Assessment (SIA) of the trade agreement, which is currently being negotiated between the EU and the US.

Following today’s publication, the EC said that the report’s technical highlighting of the “opportunities” that a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) could create for people and businesses across Europe, is now available for public consultation.

Pointing out that the work, to date, had already involved extensive contact with stakeholders, the EC said that the report indicated economic growth for all member states, a 27% rise in EU exports to the US and a “mix of social indicators” showing a combined benefit both for European and US citizens.

EU trade commissioner, Cecilia Malmström, warned, however, that the report is still a “snapshot” based on assumptions about a future TTIP deal.

“Being a draft version to now be scrutinised by stakeholders and others, this assessment should be taken with a pinch of salt,” she added. “The economic analysis is based on modelling, with many assumptions and caveats. We should thus be cautious when analysing numbers, especially when it comes to things like market data that may depend on many other factors.

“That being said, the report does highlight the many opportunities TTIP presents for the EU. I believe one particular thing cannot be scientifically captured in any study, however – the impact of TTIP on Europe’s ability to shape globalisation according to our own standards.

“Modern trade agreements are one of the tools at our disposal to shape globalisation, making it more responsible. With this in mind, both TTIP as well as our trade agreement with Canada (CETA) aim to include progressive chapters on sustainable development, including on labour rights and the environment.”

The EC added that all interested stakeholders now have the opportunity to review the draft and offer feedback, before Ecorys moves on to work on the final interim report and recommendations for the end of 2016.

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