2nd May 2016

TTIP influence on Czech Rep. projected positive

If TTIP is successfully concluded, its most ambitious version could boost Czech GDP by some 0.7% annually – a report by CERGE-EI finds. According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the expected effects are not overwhelming, but substantial. The US is Czech Republic´s biggest trading partner outside the EU. TTIP could boost direct bilateral trade, but could also impact Czech exporters to EU countries, which then export their products to the US. Also, TTIP with important chapters on opening public procurement in the US could be a big chance for the Czech industry, namely tram producers. On the other hand, Czech producers in some sectors may be affected negatively. This is expected in agriculture where numerous protective measures are in force today. Liberalization could increase competition, which could affect Czech producers. However, today´s US exports to the Czech Rep. are mostly focused on sea fish or nuts – products with limited production in the Czech Rep.

TTIP´s possible impact on agriculture was also discussed by Commissioner Phil Hogan during a POLITICO Europe event in Brussels. He stated clearly that there are areas in which the EU will never back down from its ambitious positions. One of such areas is the so-called geographical indicators. The EU has a traditionally strict policy in this issue, while the US has a more liberal approach. Many indicators protected in Europe are considered generic in the US, such as parmesan cheese. Commissioner Hogan indicated that US negotiators push for lowering EU standards. The EC´s position is clear, however – there will be no such thing. Geographical indicators are one of the areas in which the EU plans not to soften its position only to conclude TTIP in time before President Obama leaves office, Commissioner Hogan stated.

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Members of the American Chamber of Commerce in the Czech Republic