Friends of the Earth Europe has today criticized the close public ties between the European Commission and big business, as senior EU representatives were out in force for a conference of lobby group BusinessEurope.
EU Commission President José Manuel Barroso gave the opening speech at the BusinessEurope 'Industry Matters' event dedicated to industrial policy, energy and trade. Commissioners de Gucht, Tajani and Oettinger are also giving keynote speeches at the event.
2014 will be a crucial year for trade negotiations between the EU and US. But the year is beginning with the talks still surrounded in secrecy, as Friends of the Earth Europe campaigner, Natacha Cingotti, reports from a stakeholder event in Brussels.
Negotiations on a Transatlantic free trade deal are advancing but remain shrouded in secrecy.
Friends of the Earth has criticised the secrecy surrounding EU-US trade talks, which closed today in Washington. It warned that public opposition will continue to increase unless people can see that a deal will not damage public safeguards or weaken democracy.
Details of the third round of discussions on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) have not been released despite calls for transparency from Friends of the Earth and many other organisations in America and Europe.
The second round of negotiations between the EU and the US on a transatlantic trade deal closed in Brussels today with the detailed content of the talks still being kept out of the public domain.
The delay to trade talks between the EU and US, which were due to start in Brussels today, must be used to address the risks a deal represents to people and the environment, says Friends of the Earth Europe.
The negotiations were put on hold on Friday evening when it was announced that the US delegation would not be travelling to Europe due to the current shutdown of parts of the US administration.
Concerns about possible negative effects of an EU and US trade agreement are the subject of a letter sent to European Trade ministers today.
Friends of the Earth Europe, the European Consumers' Organisation (BEUC) and Eurogroup for Animals today wrote to the 27 ministers to raise concerns about the threat a deal could pose to environmental, consumer, and social regulatory standards.
The European Parliament has prioritised trade over human rights and sustainable development today in a vote that brings into force two agreements between the European Union and Central America, and Colombia and Peru. The agreements will not do enough to address human rights abuses in Latin America according to broad group of civil society organisations .