Colombia: MEPs resist new EU trade deal
David Martin, the Labour MEP who leads on trade, has reported that the proposed trade deal between the EU and Colombia will not be signed until the end of 2011, and he argues that this gives MEPs and others the chance to press concerns about harassment and violence against trade unionists. Writing on his blog, he said:
“In this interim period, MEPs nonetheless have a political power which we will try to use to ensure the European Commission commences independent monitoring of the human rights situation in Colombia.”
This is a welcome statement from a great supporter of human rights in trade deals, and it reflects the power that the Lisbon Treaty has conferred on the European Parliament, providing the same sort of democratic accountability to EU trade policy that Congressional oversight of trade deals in the USA has provided for years. The TUC/Justice for Colombia campaign against the EU-Colombia trade deal will continue.