The EU hit out today at “misconceptions” over leaked documents about a planned free trade deal with the United States that are said to show it poses risks to the climate, environment and consumers.
Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem insisted that the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) said the papers released by Greenpeace merely reflected negotiating positions by Washington and Brussels.
Malmstroem said “there seems to be quite a number of misconceptions floating around” about the “supposed leaks” on the ambitious treaty, which the US and European Union have been trying to reach a deal on since 2013.
“It begs to be said, again and again: no EU trade agreement will ever lower our level of protection of consumers, or food safety, or of the environment,” Malmstrom said in a blog.
“I am simply not in the business of lowering standards.” Greenpeace said the papers reveal “major risks for climate, environment and consumer safety.”
The EU commissioner said the papers “reflect each side’s negotiating position, nothing else. And it shouldn’t come as a surprise that there are areas where the EU and the US have different views.”
“There are areas in the TTIP negotiations where we have come a long way, but in others we are simply not in agreement,” she added.
“In areas where we are too far apart in a negotiation, we simply will not agree. In that sense, many of today’s alarmist headlines are a storm in a teacup.”