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announcement of eu-us trade negotiations June 17, 2013

Posted by Bradley in : transparency , trackback

Happened today. The Council of the EU approved the beginning of negotiations on Friday. Regulatory convergence is an important aspect of the proposed FTA, and, although SIFMA worried recently that financial services regulation wouldn’t be part of the negotiations, that doesn’t seem so clear. The EU Commission says it’s not just about regulation of goods:

The need for regulatory convergence is not limited to trade in goods. With regards to financial services, for instance, negotiations should consider creating common frameworks for prudential cooperation. Stakeholders on both sides have provided guidance on where the most significant barriers lie.

I have been examining the consultations that produced “stakeholder” comments. Unsurprisingly the “stakeholders” most concerned to comment in the lead-up to the decision to begin negotiations were businesses and trade associations. And the official narrative is relentlessly positive about the advantages of these negotiations and ignores the discomfort of a range of groups concerned with issues of privacy, extravagant IP protections, the lives of workers, and the environment.

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