16:10 GMT +3 hours25 August 2016
Live
Anti-TTIP banner

German Govt. Offers Politicians Opportunity to Peruse Secret TTIP Documents

© Flickr/ Campact
Europe
Get short URL
10115339

In a response to criticism of covert TTIP negotiations, German politicians will soon be able to get a look at the secret documents in a special reading room at the Ministry for Economic Affairs.

The German government has reacted to criticism of secretive Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations by providing a reading room in the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs, where politicians will be able to read TTIP documents. 

TTIP is a bilateral trade agreement between the EU and US that aims to reduce regulatory barriers to trade. In practice, the deregulation threatens the dismantling of legal standards in areas such as privacy, environmental protections, food safety, public health and safety at work. It also strengthens copyright and patent restrictions which, according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, "would never pass muster under public scrutiny."

The proposed TTIP agreement also opens up more public services and government contracts to the private sector, and critics have raised concerns that privatization would be effectively irreversible.

The secrecy of the negotiations, which are being conducted by the US government, the European Commission and corporate lobby groups behind closed doors without input from the general public or their democratically-elected representatives, has added to public concerns about their content.

The agreement's contents will only be disclosed when the negotiations are complete, and those who oppose the deal have been able to arm themselves with information only due to Freedom of Information requests and leaked documents. 

On Tuesday, the Funke Media Group reported on the contents of a leaked letter from German Minister for Economic Affairs Sigmar Gabriel to Bundestag President Norbert Lammert and Bundesrat President Stanislaw Tillich, which offers German federal and state politicians the chance to examine TTIP documents in a special reading room at the Ministry.

Gabriel said the offer was a bid to increase confidence in TTIP negotiations, and offered to open a room in his ministry for the viewing of documents from February 1. 

Sigmar Gabriel is opening a reading room for secret TTIP documents,' Der Westen reported.

German politicians will be able to see "consolidated negotiating texts," meaning documents in which the positions of both the European Commission and US government are presented, according to the report.

"The necessary better acceptance and legitimacy for the negotiations between the European Commission and US can only be created through transparency and close involvement of national parliaments," Gabriel wrote, portal Der Westen reported.

"Since the beginning of the negotiations about TTIP, [the German government] has promoted transparency both with regard to the public and the parliaments of EU member states," the minister said in his letter to the two chambers of parliament.

Related:
TTIP Unacceptable Due to Secrecy of Negotiations - UK Official
TTIP, Tax Havens Contribute to Extreme Global Inequality, Says Oxfam
Rising Against the Machine: Some 5,000 Protest in Berlin Against TTIP Deal
Tags:
Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), Bundesrat, Bundestag, Germany
Community standardsDiscussion
Comment via FacebookComment via Sputnik
  • Сomment

All comments

  • rishardhawk
    TTIP is yet another despicable ,nasty, underhanded Western Elite creation to disadvantage,harm or destroy Worlds trade and Economies.
    The time to remove the Evil Western Elite is long overdue.
    The BRICS would the once to Execute this Procedure, in fact one must Implore them to act on it urgently !!
  • Tom Pescatore
    What form of Republic is that where the text of a law is kept secret until the law is in place? - Only evil intention must be hidden from public scrutiny!
  • slimyfox
    The origin of the word DEMOCRACY is in two Greek words DEMOS and CRATOS which mean people and ruling, or in meaning Democracy = peoples rule or people ruling. However that what we in the western world call democracy is pure and shameless travesty and perversion of the real meaning.

    Our political establishment since early appearance of capitalism and introduction of parliamentarianism usurped power in order to create such political and economical system which is clearly in their favour. In order to create myth of peoples power they threw sand in peoples eyes and told them that now first time in the history of the humanity they are free to chose and to rule. Ironically enough people have neither power to chose nor to rule. Ruling elites made system where they nominate candidates and give us option not to chose but to select already chosen one.

    They even invented word indirect democracy just to make laugh of us, by giving us a "power" to select one of perpetually rotating person for the next term. What they do between elections is not our concern as we recognised them as supernatural and superhuman who will do the best for us and only us.

    Now in the name of democracy they decided to conduct negotiations with the most retarded democratic system on the planet and all for our benefit. They love us so much that they are prepared to take the pain of negotiations on our behalf and all for our benefit.

    They care about us so much that they want to protect us from any intellectual efforts that they took full responsibility of these boring negotiations about over 6000 (six thousand) pages contract. They love us so much that all will be done in the top secrecy and we will learn about part of agreement only after 5 years, but the best news is that agreement will be absolutely forever and will not be possible to cancel or alter it / NEVER EVER AGAIN, for thousands of years

    Can you imagine, our politicians are willing to put a noose around our necks and hang us and just before we die they will tell us that it was all done just because they sincerely with love us.

    Now either I am an idiot, which I doubt despite my age I still hold post graduated degree in International law and know that this stinks beyond any level of normality. In my life I read more than 6000 pages of agreements, contracts, depositions, and so on. I am willing to read all of these 6000+ pages very carefully in let say 30 days as I would need cross-examination of articles between themselves and with EU as well as my country legislation as I have been told that this agreement requires domestic laws to be adjusted to accommodate agreement.

    Never in my history I come across a document such as agreement or contract which would require adjustment of state legislature. That is unthinkable off as all domestic legislature has to be subjected and in accordance with provisions of constitution. Now we are witnessing an corporate document requires sovereign states to change their legislations in order to accommodate corporate agreement. That is worst than is occupation, that is outright slavery.

    Our politicians trade with as as with a live stock and we should be happy and grateful to them for doing so as we were born as intellectually impaired and need other to think what is the best for us. Love, just love this bloody democracy!
  • Welcome to 2016, the year of Tyranny against the common citizens of the world. I predict chaos, and world revolt with the UN forces moving in throughout the world to enforce our enslavement.
Show new comments (0)
Top stories