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EU Trade in services talks must protect interests of consumers and workers # TiSA

Press Release

Wednesday 3 Feb 2016

Nessa Childers, MEP for Dublin, called on the Commission to listen to Parliament’s demands when negotiating trade in services liberalisation, in the interests of public services, workers’ rights, citizens’ privacy and the right of national governments to legislate.

The Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) is under discussion between a number of members of the World Trade Organisation, with the European Commission representing the EU in such international negotiations.

The treaty will not be applied in the EU without the consent of the European Parliament.

Speaking from Strasbourg this afternoon, after Parliament approved an interim position on the state of negotiations, Ms. Childers said:

“The interests of our citizens and consumers, especially the most vulnerable, must be brought to negotiating table.

“We cannot allow public services to be further exposed to trade and competition rules from and push the limits of the markets because international players are missing out on profits.

“Health, education or social security are not just intangible commodities. Their provision is essential for the fulfilment of our people’s fundamental rights as citizens and social cohesion.

“This cannot become a backdoor for social dumping either. Services provided in Europe must be performed by workers who enjoy the standards of protection afforded by European law.

“Ideally, I would have liked to see a new Council mandate that constraints the freedom of the Commission trade teams.

“But Parliament made it clear that we cannot just give free reign to the Commission’s free market Midas touch.”