An ambitious TTIP - a comparative study of the EU's different approaches to CETA and TTIP

by Josefine Esrup

Institution: Roskilde University
Year: 2016
Keywords: actor centred institutionalism; transatlantic trade and investment partnership; Comprehensive economic and investment agreements; CETA; TTIP; EU policy making
Posted: 02/05/2017
Record ID: 2082703
Full text PDF: http://rudar.ruc.dk/handle/1800/28413


The EU had recently finished negotiating a comprehensive free trade agreement with Canada, the CETA, and is currently negotiating the TTIP agreement with the US. Both agreements are 2. Generation free trade agreements characterised by the development of common rules and standards concerning among other things investment protection and sustainable development and a high degree of liberalisation in goods, service and investment. The CETA and TTIP can be compared because of the similarities in their content and because both the US and Canada are the first western develop countries to enter into a free trade agreement with the EU. Despite the highlighted similarities, the substance of the EU proposal of sustainable development and ISDS, together with the transparency in the negotiation process is characterised by a relative more ambitious approach in TTIP compared to what was done in CETA. This apparent difference in approach is analysed through the method of outcome explaining process tracing using the theoretical framework of actor-centred institutionalism. By tracing the causal process that has led to the adoption of the joint EU approach, the constellation of actors and the institutional frames that have influenced this will be identified. It is found that differences in policy goals has resulted in a different set of available policy options to the EU institutions to achieve these goals. Different and changing preferences and perceptions towards the two agreements, along with the constrain of specific institutional settings, have resulted in approaches to sustainable development, ISDS and transparency, with a higher level of ambition in the TTIP compared to the CETA. Advisors/Committee Members: Dagnis Jensen, Mads (advisor).