[A2k] WSJ: EU Sued Over India Trade Talks

Thiru Balasubramaniam thiru at keionline.org
Tue Feb 15 22:07:17 PST 2011


	• February 15, 2011, 9:49 AM ET

EU Sued Over India Trade Talks
Brussels can’t yet match Washington for the packs of watchdogs  
following the workings of a sprawling lobbyist-infested bureaucracy  
loaded with other people’s money to spend.

But that is changing as the EU gets bigger, richer and more powerful.  
On Tuesday, the Corporate Europe Observatory, a left-wing advocacy  
group backed by Quaker organizations, said it was suing the European  
Commission for refusing to release details of its negotiating position  
in ongoing free trade talks with India.

As an example, the Observatory has published a letter sent to industry  
umbrella group BusinessEurope with a portion deleted.

“They released this information to lobby groups, so we think it should  
be public,” said Pia Eberhardt, an officer working on the campaign.  
“We’ve been faced for years with delaying tactics and heavy censorship.”

EU officials say they have cooperated as much as possible with  
monitoring groups, but that it would defeat the point of holding  
negotiations if they were to divulge all the details of their positions.

Corporate Europe Observatory is one of 200 groups trying to block free  
trade talks with India, which they say will increase inequality and  
hurt farmers on the subcontinent. Negotiators say they expect to close  
talks by the end of 2011.

The case will be heard by the EU’s Luxembourg-based General Court. The  
Commission now has a little more than two months to respond.


Thiru Balasubramaniam
Geneva Representative
Knowledge Ecology International (KEI)
thiru at keionline.org

Tel: +41 22 791 6727
Mobile: +41 76 508 0997

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