Today’s topic is the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (short: TTIP): Basically, it is an agreement between the USA and the EU regarding lifting some obstacles that appeared when selling from the USA to the EU or vice versa. On the whole, one should think that this is a good idea. Well, maybe it is, who knows? Nevertheless, there are some points, that made me thinking:
- Politicians (even the ones in the EU, that we did not actually vote for) are working for the people. So I do not understand, why these negotiations have to be so secretive, without openly dealing with it. What do they have to hide?
- Investor-state dispute settlement: Well, so we do not want genetically manipulated foods in Austria (thanks Monsanto, we actually do not want to buy new seed every year, because we are not allowed – if their goods are still able to reproduce anyway – to use the seeds to sow it next year without buying licences). Nevertheless, there is a chance, that they will be able to force states to allow them selling their products.
And the biggest point, that does in my opinion need a special attention: Money is not created out of nothing. There is never such kind of agreement, where everybody wins (not even in the EU, see the countries with weaker production). If it is easier to export from the USA to the EU, products where the EU is less productive (so less competitive, because more expensive) will vanish from our markets. So, if everybody would win, where would the money to buy the new products come from? If local products vanish, also the people producing them will lose their jobs and have less money. And one thing is for sure: The countries in the EU have a very good (but expensive) social security system, other than the USA.
So, where will the production of goods be more expensive? Definitely in the EU. Do we invest in education in the EU currently? Not as much as we should, because we are fighting the crisis of 2008 and there is not enough money to concentrate on small topics like “will our people be competetive on the market regarding education?”. Well, so where can we win in such an agreement? I am afraid, that the answer is nowhere – such an agreement does definitely lead to people living in the EU being losers of globalisation in the long run. Our only chance would be to invest in people, but we are far behind Asia and the USA if it comes to the education quality.
Find information in English on the 2-click solution here: http://yro.slashdot.org/story/11/09/03/0115241/heises-two-clicks-for-more-privacy-vs-facebook