Democracy and Transparency

The European Commission must do more to improve transparency regarding TTIP and CETA negotiations, after it has come under criticism for refusing to reveal what is being negotiated under TTIP, including by the European Ombudsman. Although some EU documents have been disclosed, they are frequently out of date by the time they are released. US negotiators tend to disclose almost nothing at all.

Even members of the European Parliament (who will vote to adopt or reject the final agreement) and national parliamentarians have only limited and strictly restricted access to so-called consolidated negotiating texts in special reading rooms. Every negotiating round takes place behind closed doors and joint EU-US press conferences on TTIP are devoid of real content. Consultations with civil society and stakeholder meetings are little more than content-free formalities.

Any improvement in transparency must fulfill at least the following principles: greater public access to EU and US negotiating documents; more active disclosure of documents; more balanced and transparent public participation throughout the negotiating process.