ETUC welcomes promise of more responsible trade policy

The ETUC has long called for trade deals that work for all, and welcomes the European Commission taking up the same call in its new strategy ‘Trade for All: Towards a more responsible trade and investment policy’.

“The Commission promises to promote sustainable development, human rights and good governance in future trade agreements,” said Liina Carr, Confederal Secretary of the European Trade Union Confederation, “and we look forward to the EU translating those aspirations into reality.”

In its Manifesto adopted on October 2 at its Congress in Paris, the ETUC called for EU international trade and investment agreements to aim for shared prosperity and sustainable economic and social development.

The ETUC has for years been calling for trade agreements, including the controversial TTIP, to

  • promote employment;
  • protect public services and the environment;
  • contain enforceable labour rights based on International Labour Organisation (ILO) Conventions;
  • include ambitious chapters aimed at promoting higher labour, environmental and technical standards set by democratically accountable representatives, notably in regard to any regulatory cooperation;
  • not give special legal privileges to foreign investors such as in the widely-disliked Investor State Dispute Settlement mechanism;
  • be negotiated in a transparent and democratic way;
  • respect democratic decision-making, public interests and cultural identity.  

“The European trade union movement has clear benchmarks against which we will be judging the implementation of the new trade policy,” concluded Liina Carr.