Approved by the ETUC Permanent Committee on International Matters, Trade and International Development on 14 January 2016


The European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) and its affiliates call for a reorientation of EU Trade Policy to promote economic, social and environmental justice. For the ETUC, an open trading system is important but should not be an end in itself. It should promote decent work in the EU and abroad. The ETUC believes that global trade in both goods and services must be conducted under fair conditions in order to guarantee the protection of labour rights and to enable
the wider public to benefit from possible welfare gains. In order to guarantee the effective protection of labour rights, the ETUC insists that all EU trade and investment agreements must include enforceable labour protections.

The ETUC has made its position and demands regarding trade and investment agreements very clear in the context of the public debates around the agreements
between the EU and the US (TTIP) as well as Canada (CETA). The EU has been negotiating a plurilateral agreement on trade in services (TiSA) since 2012 together with 22 other states. According to the mandate given to the EU Commission by the Council, this agreement should aim at extensive liberalisation by being “comprehensive and ambitious” and “apply in principle to all sectors and modes of supply”.

An examination of the mandate and of leaked chapters of the draft agreement leads the ETUC to call for a redefinition of the mandate and for the negotiations to address the following areas of concern.

Read the entire ETUC position on TiSA here.