French Trade Minister: Call TTIP Off

♠ Posted by Emmanuel in , at 8/30/2016 06:15:00 PM
No translation required, eh?
The mood towards trade is well and truly souring among the United States' negotiation counterparts for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). Just a day or two ago, the German trade minister said that the negotiations should be halted already since nothing was happening. We made mention of the French as among those particularly opposed to it on the grounds that the ever-sensitive French agricultural sector would be hurt. All the while, the French would supposedly gain few reciprocal benefits in accessing the US market.

Well, here we have the French trade minister now calling for scrapping current negotiations as well:
French Trade Minister Matthias Fekl said he would request a halt to TTIP talks at next month's EU trade ministers' meeting in Bratislava after German Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel declared at the weekend that talks were "de facto dead".

Observers say both are responding to public mistrust of a deal that critics say would lower environmental and food standards and allow foreign multinationals to challenge government policies. 
The crux of the matter is that politicians in European countries are simply responding to trade-weary electorates--who are in imminent danger of being voted out of office should they be seen as more pro-trade than the public mood:
Ahead of elections in France and Germany next year, politicians are keenly aware that TTIP is not a vote winner. The Bertelsmann Foundation poll showed only 17 percent of Germans saw TTIP as a good thing in April, down from 55 percent two years earlier.
It may not yet be over for the TTIP, but like the TPP--and the WTO Doha Round which spawned both since due to its protracted nature--TTIP is looking quite unlikely.