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Trade Policy Day: “Trade-for-All: What are the benefits for our people?”

INTA
Brussels
Image of two strips red and blue with white letters stating trade policy day Image of two strips red and blue with white letters stating trade policy day
trade policy day-2018.jpg © Image used under the license from Shutterstock.com

The theme of this years´ edition of the Trade Policy Day was “Trade-for-All: What are the benefits for our people?” INTA held its' third Trade Policy Day focussing on the implementation of the Commission`s Trade for All strategy which was adopted in October 2015. Alan Beattie from the Financial Times moderated a high-level panel with seven speakers including Trade Commissioner Malmström.

For the first time ever students from the Free University of Brussels and KU Leuven will actively participate and raise questions to the panellists.


EU-Vietnam Free Trade and Investment Protection Agreements

INTA
Brussels
Image of the city busy street at night with old and new buildings in contrast to each other. Image of the city busy street at night with old and new buildings in contrast to each other.
Poster hearing EU-Vietnam FTA.jpg © Image used under the license from Shutterstock.com

On 10 October, the INTA Committee organized a public hearing on Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and Investment Protection Agreement (IPA) between the European Union and Vietnam. The agreements were concluded recently and the European Parliament will be requested to give its consent to these historic deals. The hearing hosted chief negotiators of the agreements from both sides, as well as experts and stakeholders (business, human rights, including labour and environment) from the EU and from Vietnam.

Vietnam is a nation of over 90 million people with one of the fastest growing economies in the world and with a very young population. The EU exports to Vietnam are dominated by high tech products including electrical machinery and equipment, aircraft, vehicles, and pharmaceutical products. Vietnam's key export items to the EU include telephone sets, electronic products, footwear, textiles and clothing, coffee, rice, seafood, and furniture.


The EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement

INTA
Brussels
Image of EU and Japan flags Image of EU and Japan flags
eu-japan.jpg © European Union (2018)

Members of INTA Committee took a close look at the landmark Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and Japan – just two days before the deal was signed by EU and Japan leaders in Brussels and during times of mounting global trade tensions. The former Japanese chief negotiator, Mr. SUZUKI, DG TRADE's Director-General, Mr. DEMARTY, as well as wide range of stakeholders from the EU and Japan, including business, trade unions and Civil Society, discussed its content and potential impact.

The Public Hearing, chaired by the INTA Chairman and with contributions by the INTA Rapporteur, Mr. SILVA PEREIRA, kick-started the Parliamentary debate on the consent procedure.

The European Parliament has the final word on the deal before it can enter into force.


Strengthening ties: EU-Latin America trade relations

INTA
Brussels
Image of a bridge over water connecting two lands Image of a bridge over water connecting two lands
image_latin america-hearing.jpg © European Union (2018)

Strengthening trade and political ties with our Latin American partners is a key priority especially in times when protectionism is raising and the multilateral trading system is at stake. INTA held a public hearing focussing on the modernisation of the Mexico and Chile agreements, the MERCOSUR negotiations and the implementation of trade agreements with Colombia, Peru, Ecuador and Central America.


WTO: the way forward after Buenos Aires

INTA
Brussels
Image of flags of the countries, members of the WTO thrown in a disorderly pile Image of flags of the countries, members of the WTO thrown in a disorderly pile
image of poster for inta hearing on future of the wto.jpg © European Union (2018)

The 11th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in Buenos Aires ended without any negotiated outcome. At the same time, the organisation is under pressure due to escalating tensions between major trading partners. Is the WTO in crisis? What is the way forward? INTA discussed this with WTO Deputy-Director General Frederic Agah and invited experts from China, the United States, India and the Geneva-based International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development.


Brexit and future trade relations

INTA
Brussels
Image of two hands in the gesture to shake hands, painted in the colours of UK and EU flags Image of two hands in the gesture to shake hands, painted in the colours of UK and EU flags
image of poster for INTA brexit hearing.jpg © European Union (2018)

INTA held a public hearing on widely debated topic of Brexit and future EU-UK trade relations. Academics and other experts discussed the economic impact of the UK withdrawal on mutual trade and its wider implications, such as the effects on EU trade agreements with third countries and preferences for the least developed countries, as well as options for transition period after the exit date.

The discussion among experts, and representatives of automotive industry, SMEs and workers focused on a possible future trade agreement between the EU and the UK, including the related issues of market access and rules of origin, customs union and special customs arrangement, regulatory cooperation-level playing field, services and implications of WTO most favoured nation principle, and questions of dispute settlement.


Screening of foreign investment in the EU

INTA
Brussels
Finance Concept with Stack of Coins - FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) written on Finance Concept with Stack of Coins - FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) written on
image-poster-hearing screening of foreing investment.jpg © European Union (2018)

For the first time key figures from policy makers to experts in the field publically discussed the screening of foreign investments in strategic sectors of the EU. The CFIUS Chair, MS, OECD, the EIB, a number of academic and social partners shared their views on one of the EU's Priority Dossiers for 2018.


Trade Policy Day

INTA
Image of signs and the text Trade Policy Day Image of signs and the text Trade Policy Day
Trade Policy Day © European Union

INTA held its second "Trade Policy Day". Two years after the adoption of the Commission`s new trade and investment strategy entitled "Trade for all" and only two months after the presentation of the Commission´s midterm review of the Trade-for-all-strategy, the aim of the Trade Policy Day was to analyse and discuss with high-level guests, stakeholders and the civil society the state of play of the Union`s Common Commercial Policy (CCP) and analyse the legitimacy of trade policy.


Trade Related Aspects of Global Economic Governance

INTA
Brussels
Image of a globe with vectors pointing in different directions with the title of the hearing above Image of a globe with vectors pointing in different directions with the title of the hearing above
poster-hearing-global-economic-governance.jpg © European Union (2017)

Three months after the 2017 G20 summit in Hamburg, INTA held a public hearing to discuss with different experts, stakeholders and representatives of international organisations the Trade related aspects of global economic governance. The European Union, via its institutions and Member States, is participating in various standard- setting fora in the field of international trade and external economy in order to stabilize and strengthen the global economic system.

However, decisions are often taken in informal international bodies where executives from officials' up to leaders' level meet. The decision-making procedure sometimes lacks a meaningful accountability mechanisms. By holding a public hearing on the matter INTA is contributing to strengthen the parliamentary oversight of global economic governance.


Intellectual Property Rights in International Trade

INTA
Brussels
Image of the world map with magnifying glass focused on phrase Image of the world map with magnifying glass focused on phrase
poster-hearing-intellectual-property-rights.jpg © European Union (2017)

Members of INTA Committee heard from experts, academics and industry how current IPRs impact trade and in turn how trade impacts IPRs. The hearing aimed at providing a view on existing IPR provisions in free trade agreements, their implementation and enforcement, possible improvements for the future, while taking account of the WTO and WIPO frameworks.

A fair and balanced system of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) is key for establishing a conducive environment for creators and at the same time ensuring the even spreading of innovation and progress.
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