By Daniel Hunter
The European Parliament has voted in favour of a resolution to bridge the gap in negotiations over the controversial Transatlantic Trade and Investment Parternship (TTIP) deal between the EU and the US.
The partnership has drawn strong criticism from some in Europe, particularly in the UK where many believe it will open up the NHS to privatisation.
The US had said that for any negotiations to be successful a dispute body must be incorporated into the agreement.
The EU Parliament voted 436-241 in favour of the resolution, which will replace the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) mechanism with a new “more transparent” system of dispute resolution.
European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmstrom said the vote shows “that the old system of investor-state dispute settlement should not and cannot be reproduced in TTIP".
“Parliament’s call today for a 'new system' must be heard, and it will be,” Malmstrom said. “I will now press ahead to flesh these out, and transform them into legal proposals, so that these further reforms can be incorporated into Europe’s proposals for TTIP.”
Supporters claim that the TTIP will boost both economies by around $100 billion.