IAS Important Topics on International Current Affairs: Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership

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IAS Important Topics on International Current Affairs: The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) will conduct the civil services (CS) preliminary examination on June 18 this year. It is one of the most esteemed and toughest exams in the country. With a success rate of 0.1- 0.3 percent of the total percentage of candidates who apply, it is really difficult to nail the examination.

As you know, On 10th May 2017, we have shared IAS Prelims 2017 Important Topics on International current affairs which will help you prepare for your upcoming examination. Here is the topic that we have discussed Yesterday, Click on the link below to explore.

IAS Important Topics on International Current Affairs: Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership

Let us move forward with our next topic i.e. Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

 

IAS Important Topics on International Current Affairs

Today we will discuss the Tenth topic i.e  Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Below mentioned is the explanation of the said topic.

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Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)

The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is a proposed trade agreement between the European Union and the United States, with the aim of promoting trade and multilateral economic growth. TTIP is considered a companion agreement to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The agreement is under ongoing negotiations. Its main three broad areas are market access, specific regulation, and broader rules and principles and modes of co-operation.

Negotiation rounds

Negotiations are held in week-long cycles alternating between Brussels and the USA. The negotiators were hoping to conclude their work by the end of 2016.

  • The 1st round of negotiations: 7–12 July 2013 in Washington DC
  • The 2nd round of negotiations: 11–15 November 2013 in Brussels
  • The 3rd round of negotiations: 16–21 December 2013 in Washington DC
  • The 4th round of negotiations: 10–14 March 2014 in Brussels
  • The 5th round of negotiations: 19–23 May 2014 in Arlington, Virginia
  • The 6th round of negotiations: 13–18 July 2014 in Brussels
  • The 7th round of negotiations: 29 September–3 October 2014 in Chevy Chase, Maryland
  • The 8th round of negotiations: 2–6 February 2015 in Brussels
  • The 9th round of negotiations: 20–24 April 2015 in New York
  • The 10th round of negotiations: 13–17 July 2015 in Brussels
  • The 11th round of negotiations: 19–23 October 2015 in Miami
  • The 12th round of negotiations: 22–26 February 2016 in Brussels
  • The 13th round of negotiations: 25–29 April 2016 in New York
  • The 14th round of negotiations: 11–15 July 2016 in Brussels
  • The 15th round of negotiations: 3–7 October 2016 in New York

Conclusion of the 14th TTIP Negotiation Round – 15 July 2016 

  • The European Commission is in charge of negotiations on behalf of the EU while the Office of the US Trade Representative is the main negotiator for the US. Lobby groups and representatives of companies are also heavily involved in the talks.
  • Once an agreement is reached, the EU council of ministers has to ratify TTIP followed by the European parliament and possibly all EU member state parliaments, depending on how the agreement is interpreted.
  • In the US, both houses of Congress have to pass the agreement

The 15th TTIP Negotiation Round – 3-7 October 2016 

Despite the huge protests and the many critics of the past two months, the 15th round of TTIP negotiations took place as planned last week in New York City. With the American elections getting closer and a growing scepticism in the local European parliaments, many saw the EU-US trade deal as almost dead. Now it seems the two sides are determined to reverse the trend in a last attempt to save the deal and negotiators said it loud: “negotiations will continue”.

The 15th round came not long after France and Germany claimed that the TTIP talks have reached a dead-end, while EU trade commissioner Cecilia Malmström herself conceded that TTIP will undergo a “Natural Pause” due to the forthcoming end of President Obama’s term and Whitehouse changeover.

  • The talks in New York, according to Bercero, “focused on consolidating texts and removing the differences we had in the existing proposals” in order to solve technical details and linguistic differences.
  • In his Speech He added that regulatory cooperation, including regulatory coherence, technical barriers to trade and SPS, was the main area addressed.
  • Bercero also stated that the talks brought “very encouraging” progress on regulatory cooperation in several sectors, including pesticides and chemicals.
  • Neither Bercero nor Mullaney revealed whether further negotiating rounds are going to be held before the end of the Obama administration.

Criticism

  • Because TTIP is negotiated in secret by the European Commission, an unelected body, critics say the agreement undermines democracy.
  • Additionally, American food safety and environmental standards are less strict than European ones.
  • People fear that “harmonising” standards translates to lowering European standards to the level of the US.
  • Further areas where TTIP could lead to relaxed standards in the EU are privacy protection, pharmaceuticals and workers’ rights.

It is also feared that TTIP aims to give US companies access to European education, transport, water services and public health, including the NHS. Anti- TTIP groups also criticise the introduction of investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS).

Over here we conclude our article on IAS Important Topics on International Current Affairs. Stay tuned with us for the rest of the topic that we will discuss day by day. 

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