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[EurActiv] TTIP elephants hiding behind ISDS

The controversy surrounding the inclusion of the Investor-State Dispute Settlement clause in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is seen by some as a smokescreen for ideological opposition to the treaty, and is perceived as a way to divert attention from other likely hotspots in the negotiations. [...]

Various clauses within the proposed regulation would effect the larger US companies offering so-called “over-the-top” data services, such as Google and Amazon, and more significantly the burgeoning cloud computing sector. [...]

With Germany and France – and new Digital Affairs Commissioner Günther Oettinger – notably hardening their stance on Google in recent weeks, and calling for a stronger EU response to perceived competition abuse by the US giant, the scope for data issues yet to effect TTIP is immense.
One source close to the US industry who spoke on condition of anonymity told EurActiv last year: “At the moment, it is looking like a trade dispute over the data sector is as likely to emerge between the US and EU before any trade agreement emerges.” [...]

In the end, data flows will have to come onto the table. The TTIP cannot be agreed before that happens,” one senior negotiator close to the TTIP talks told EurActiv last month on condition of anonymity. [...]

http://www.euractiv.com/sections/ttip-and-arbitration-clause/ttip-elepha...