Wikileaks yesterday leaked negotiating texts from the ongoing negotiations on an international trade in services agreement (TISA). The leaks come ahead of the seventh negotiating round, taking place in Geneva next week. The Greens have previously raised concerns about the lack of transparency in the negotiations on TISA, which could have major implications for the service sector and basic public services. Commenting on the leaks and ahead of the next negotiating round, Green trade spokesperson Ska Keller said:
"The leaked TISA negotiating texts heighten concerns about the potentially far-reaching implications of these opaque talks. It is worrying that the leaks indicate a backroom push to further liberalise the financial services sector: this would show that nothing has been learnt from the financial crisis. It is also an affront to current ongoing international efforts to bring the finance sector under control, for example in the G20.
"The general direction of these negotiations is clearly worrying, notably the goal of far-reaching service liberalisation. Crucial public services like education, health, water supply, energy and social security appear to be clear targets of these negotiations. Any liberalisation undermining these public services would have dramatic negative consequences for communities and individuals around the world. Public services must be immediately removed from the scope of these negotiations and we will be pushing the EU to ensure this.
"These negotiations must be immediately brought out of the darkness. We insist that all documents be made public. Only by doing so can citizens and democratically-elected parliaments properly assess what governments are negotiating behind closed doors. The EU must not make the same mistakes it has made with the EU-US transatlantic trade negotiations (TTIP) and previous trade negotiations. It is only due to enormous public pressure that the European Commission has finally made some information available. This practise cannot be replicated with TISA."