The Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) – the so-called “free trade” deal between the European Union (EU) and the United States is rocketing up the global agenda with a latest Google Trends result showing that TTIP overtook the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) for search results for the first time last month.
The uptick in searches for the deal, which critics say is a “corporatist stitch up” designed to enable major corporations access to larger markets across the Atlantic appears to be spurred on by huge demonstrations of anti-TTIP activists across Europe.
Hannover, Graz, Berlin, and Vienna are the top cities for the search results, but the issue is also rising in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands.
Curiously, neither TPP or TTIP rank highly in the United States, possibly a sign that U.S. citizens are unaware of the two deals that authorities on both sides of the world are pursuing with vigour.
TTIP has become a major subject in Britain’s EU referendum debate, with proponents signalling that Britain would not be able to enter into a free trade deal with the United States outside the EU.
But critics have pointed to the deal’s Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) section, which effectively allows big corporations to sue national governments for voter-mandated policy enactments, or changes.
Breitbart London revealed how the Canadian government has been sued for over $2bn under similar arrangements as part of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and UK-based activists have expressed concern that TTIP will open up Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) to similar lawsuits and privatisation attempts.
Earlier this week Greenpeace released leaked TTIP documents, citing concerns over the erosion of environmental law, regulation, and consumer protection within the document.
A Tufts University analysis entitled “Trading Down: Unemployment, Inequality and Other Risks of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement” forecast an average U.S. income decline of a half-percentage point due to TPP.
The paper also forecast that around 448,000 jobs would be lost in the United States alone because of the deal.