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T.T.I.P.: USA vs EU… the dark side of trade?


José V. Cantavella Cabedo
Attorney at Law-Environmental & Chemicals
Head of Legal dept.
ChemSafe Srl


Some people in the EU think that the TTIP is a new challenge for EU while others thinks that is a very dangerous tool handled by multinational companies and lobbyists.

The now famous and discussed TTIP or Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership is a series of trade negotiations being carried out since 2013 between the European Union and the United States of America, and according to the US Government a “sister” agreement of the TPP or Trans-Pacific Partnership.

The total global GDP (1) between the EU and the US represents over 60% of it, and the EU investment in USA is more than 8 times the investment in China and India together, meanwhile the US investment in the EU is more than 3 times the investment in the whole Asia area. Nowadays the trading between the EU and the US account for a third of all World trade flows.

The TTIP negotiations are classified from the general public (only selected people have access to the discussions) but what it is already known that there are three main areas:

  1. market access;
  2. specific sector regulation and
  3. principles and means of co-operation and wider rules.

The TTIP negotiations started on July 2013 with the idea of being finalized by December 2014, they are still going on with the Obama administration trying to finish it by the end of 2016.




TTIP, a small acronym that people had heard but that not so many people knows what is really about.

The TTIP is a bi-lateral trade negotiations agreement whose main scope being the reduction of regulatory and trade/tariff barriers in order to speed up business between both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.

According to a leaked US proposal on tariff reduction, the proposed reduction of 87.5% to 97% of all tariffs would be reduced to zero.

In July 2014 the EU Commission (2) made public the three discussion vast blocks, but the US did not reveal any of its discussion texts.

The trade barriers are defined in three different blocks:

market access for EU and US companies;

mutual cooperation on regulatory issues and

global rules of trade such as sustainable development or competition policy.

TTIP negotiations had started on July 2013 in Washington (USA) and are held in one week long periods alternating between Brussels (Belgium) and different locations in USA (such as Washington DC, Arlington, Virginia, New York or Miami).

These negotiations are divided in rounds an ...

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