Categories
Legal reform

Council declassifies TTIP negotiating mandate

cooperating-governements_usa_regulating_flagsNearly a year and a half after its drafting, on 9 October 2014, the Council declassified and disclose the Commission’s negotiating mandate for the free trade talks with the United States better known as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

Maarten Hillebrandt

The disclosure comes after much public controversy that accompanied the various rounds of talks that have taken place up until now, in spite of the document being leaked at an early stage. Various MEPs, the European Ombudsman, and outgoing Commissioner for trade De Gucht criticised the Council for keeping it under the fold. In its annual transparency report, the EP renewed its pledge to do all in its power to “ensure that future trade negotiations, and in particular the on-going negotiations with the US […] were more transparent and open for stakeholder involvement” (p. 12). The decision to disclose the document at long last has been met with praise by various actors.

Categories
Oversight

European Ombudsman calls for “revolving doors” register

The European institutions must provide more openness concerning their decision making and transfers of civil servants to the private sector, European Ombudsman O’Reilly stated at the presentation of her annual report for 2013. [In Dutch, translation here]

Categories
Oversight

European Ombudsman Diamandouros prepares for retirement; sounds note of cautionary optimism about future of EU transparency

Yesterday, the European Ombudsman Nikiforos Diamandouros, addressed the media about his time in office as the citizen’s advocate of good administration. Diamandouros will retire on 1 October 2013.

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Categories
Oversight

“EU Ombudsman Blasts EC for Denying Document Access”

Issues of integration, especially of economic integration, and the attached debate on national sovereignty are ranking high among the EU’s perceived transparency gaps these days.