Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:01 pm on 9th July 2015.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh Shadow SNP Westminster Group Leader (Trade and Investment) 5:01 pm, 9th July 2015

I absolutely agree with my hon. Friend’s position in relation to Unison. I am about to come to Unite in a similar respect.

In February this year, SNP Members of the Scottish Parliament, led by our First Minster, signed up to a pledge proposed by Unite, which stated, amongst other clauses, that

“TTIP must not give current or future US investors new rights that they could use to sue any level of government, public authority or NHS organisation because of their policies or actions relating to public healthcare.”

My colleagues and I absolutely support that pledge. Of course we welcome the recent developments announced by the Commission in May, but there is still some distance to travel if the final agreement is to gain our full support. This Government must clearly state to our European partners that the UK will veto TTIP unless we receive an explicit exemption for the NHS and Scottish Water as part of a general public sector exemption.

We are very proud of our public services. Governments in Scotland, the UK and beyond must therefore be able to manage those services for the greater good without fear that their democratic mandate might be overruled in the courts.