“What emerges is an understanding of TTIP as the political project of a transatlantic corporate and political elite which, on the unfounded promise of increased trade and job creation, will attempt to reverse social and environmental regulatory protections, redirect legal rights from citizens to corporations, and consolidate US and European global leadership in a changing world order.”
(Seattle to Brussels Network, Kim Bizzarri)
A key element of this Transatlantic Trade Agreement, but only one of hundreds of highly controversial proposals, is the move to deregulate the status currently accorded to imports of GM seeds and plants for cultivating in European soils.
A determined effort by all of us, who care about real food and real farming, will be needed to stop one of the most insidious attempts yet to end Europe’s widespread resistance to genetically modified organisms. In particular, the use of GM seeds in European agriculture, leading to genetically modified crops being grown in areas that have, up until now, successfully resisted the GM corporate invasion.
The EU has so far licenced just one GM maize variety (MON 810) to be grown within its territories, and one potato variety (Amflora) for industrial starch production. Up until now, the EU has acted according to a largely restrictive trade practice concerning GM and other controversial food products due to major public pressure, as well as under a broad EU ruling termed ‘the precautionary principle’.
All that could be about to go out the window under current negotiations between the USA and the European Commission to ratify a new trade agreement known TTIP, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.
The objective of this ‘partnership’ is to facilitate far going corporate control of the international market place and to prize-open the mostly closed (but not locked) European door on GM crops and seeds.
While this corporate heist is being eased into place, replicas are being negotiated between Canada and the EU under the title ‘Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement’ CETA.
And as if that wasn’t enough, a further dismantling of trade tariffs is underway via the ‘Trade In Services Agreement’ TiSA: a wide ranging further liberalization of corporate trading conditions as a direct continuation of the WTO (World Trade Organisation) GATS agreement, with its highly onerous, corporate biased ‘Codex Alimentarius’ sanitary and hygiene rulings. Indigenous seeds and medicinal herbs are particularly under attack via Codex.