The Slovenia Times

TTIP Could Be Tough on Car, Pharma and Food Sectors, Study Shows

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The ongoing analysis, carried out by the Ljubljana Faculty of Economic and some of whose preliminary findings were already released on Tuesday, shows that the automotive, pharma and food sectors have the most to fear.

On the other hand, the deal between the EU and the US would bring the greatest opportunities for the wood, machine and manufacturing industries, the press heard at Wednesday's presentation by the Economic Development and Technology Ministry, which commissioned the study.

Recapping the main findings so far, the head researcher Jo┼że P. Damijan said that trade with the US only accounts for 1% of Slovenian imports and exports, while direct investment has also been modest.

The effect of TTIP on Slovenia's GDP in a 10-year period would be insignificant. If liberalisation was less intensive, the effect on GDP would be only slightly negative (between -0.01% and -0.02%).

In case that the liberalisation was more intensive, the effect on Slovenia's GDP would be slightly positive (between +0.02% and +0.27%).

"Every slightly more significant reform in the country has effects 100-times bigger than this agreement," Damijan said.

The economist however still believes TTIP, which needs to be ratified by the parliaments of all member state, makes sense, since it is creating the largest free trade zone in the world and provides opportunities for ambitious companies.

But potential pitfalls also need to be examined and the study is meant to be of help to the government in negotiations, where the potential negative effects on the economy should be reduced.

The analysis moreover found that 80% of the Slovenian enterprisers interviewed are not familiar with the content of TTIP and that 40% have no interest in doing business with the US.

Head of the directorate for tourism and internationalisation at the Economy Ministry Marjan Hribar added the government would debate the data on Thursday.

He stressed Slovenia will not agree to any lowering of standards, including not in food matters, and is also "very reserved" when it comes the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) mechanism, which is highlighted as problematic in the study as well.

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