EU-US trade deal negotiations
Sir, – Further to “Thornton say no to GM food” (Business, July 14th), I would like to thank chef Kevin Thornton for highlighting what would be involved if and when such a EU-US trade agreement is signed. It is about time someone did so!
In Germany people have been demonstrating, protesting and debating the issue for months, whereas here the general public has never been made aware of the implications should this deal go ahead. So far Enda Kenny has said it would bring jobs to Ireland, which is nothing but wishful thinking. There was no mention of the negative aspects, such as allowing genetically modified food and hormone-treated beef into Ireland. I am hoping that now our farmers will also take a stand. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – Kevin Thornton has raised concerns about the ongoing negotiations on an EU-US trade deal which were launched in Dublin last year. It is estimated that an ambitious deal could benefit the European economy by €119 billion a year – equivalent to €545 for an average EU household – and the US by €95 billion a year.
The European Commission, which conducts the negotiations for the 28 European member states, has been crystal clear; it will not negotiate existing levels of protection for the sake of an agreement.
This is not a race to the bottom. Making our regulations more compatible does not mean going for the lowest common denominator, but rather seeing where we diverge unnecessarily.
There will be no compromise whatsoever on safety, consumer protection or the environment. But there will be a willingness to look pragmatically on whether we can do things better and in a more coordinated fashion.
Obviously, each side will keep the right to regulate environmental, safety and health issues at the level each side considers appropriate. – Yours, etc,
Head of the European
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