Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:17 pm on 9 July 2015.

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Photo of Nicholas Boles Nicholas Boles The Minister for Universities and Science, Minister of State (Department for Business, Innovation and Skills) (Jointly with the Department for Education) 5:17, 9 July 2015

No, I will not.

The hon. Lady referred to, and I will now repeat, some of the words of the European Commissioner for Trade, Cecilia Malmström, who wrote to a Minister in January about the NHS. She said:

“member states do not have to open public health services to competition from private providers, nor do they have to outsource services to private providers”.

She also said:

“member states are free to change their policies and bring back outsourced services back into the public sector whenever they choose to do so, in a manner respecting property rights… it makes no difference whether a member state already allows some services to be outsourced to private providers, or not”.

The European Union negotiating position for the TTIP deal is to ensure that EU countries will be free to decide how they run their public health systems. The NHS—our NHS: the Scottish NHS, the English NHS, and the NHS in all parts of the United Kingdom—is not at risk from this agreement.