Focus on: TTIP, food & farming
The EU agreed to drop its 8% tariff on US lobsters while the US agreed to cut in half tariffs on EU imports, including some prepared meals, crystal glassware and cigarette lighters.
74 NGOs have written to the EU Commission to demand that genetically modified crops are not pushed onto Europe’s fields and plates as part of a trade deal with the USA.
Will the EU concede to the demands of US negotiators on food standards? The Commission can in fact circumvent the mandate by using other methods that make it much easier to weaken standards.
The European Union is prepared to lower barriers for US agricultural goods such as GMOs as part of a mini trade deal, but don’t expect bigger concessions like cutting tariffs or changing EU laws, an EU official said.
US trade negotiators, Agriculture Secretary, and American farm interests have all been crystal clear: the precautionary principle must go, and now is the time to finally axe it.
It is time for America and Europe to embrace innovation and technology in a safe, sustainable agriculture, says US Secretary of Agriculture.
The US is troubled by the EU’s non-tariff barriers that impede the use of modern agricultural tools and technologies such as biotechnology, veterinary drugs and pathogen reduction treatments.
A scaled-down deal could include European apples and pears, US seafood, and food safety standards.
A group of EU member states are unhappy about the lack of information from the European Commission on the trade talks with the US and have expressed their “nervousness” about what could be in the deal.
Concerns that a previous EU-US trade deal was anti-democratic and would lower food safety, labour and environmental standards resulted in in mass protests in Germany, Austria and France in 2015.