Corporates Only to Benefit, SMEs Mobilise Against TTIP
In this interview, Martina Römmelt-Fella, head of Fella Maschinenbau GmbH and one of the founders of the initiative KMU gegen TTIP (small and medium-sized enterprises against TTIP) expresses her opinion on the need of opposition to the treaty TTIP specifically by enterprises. After explaining the main weaknesses of TTIP (false economic promises and undermining of democratic processes and socio-ecological achievements), Römmelt-Fella is being asked about the initiatives’ cooperations with other TTIP-opposing groups:
„DMN: Are you working with the citizens campaign, „Stopp TTIP“?
Martina Römmelt-Fella: No, we are not working with that campaign. Some of us have contacts there – my co-founder Gottfried Härle, for example, through his ecologically orientated business association. But as supporters of the campaign, we are calling on people to support the large-scale demonstration being staged in Berlin on 10 October 2015. And we shall be there with our own banner.
DMN: What sort of contact do you have with Europe’s other SMEs as far as the campaign is concerned?
Martina Römmelt-Fella: In Austria, for example, more than 1,200 companies have already signed up, supporting the Austrian anti-TTIP campaign (via www.kmu-gegen-ttip.at). (…) And there are already companies critical of TTIP in France, Belgium, Slovenia, the Czech Republic and in Spain – and we are loosely cooperating with them. We are coordinating rather more closely with our colleagues in Austria. (…)“
Asked about SMEs in the United States and their position to the treaty, Römmelt-Fella explains:
“In America there is also a broad civil society movement against TTIP. Their hard-fought-for ‘buy America’ policy, for example, which gives a boost to regional manufacturers, would fall victim to TTIP. The huge, global ports of New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Miami, the industrial and services centre that is the city of Pittsburgh, and even Hollywood have all – through city council resolutions – symbolically declared themselves TPP and TTIP-free zones. The American union federation – the AFL-CIO – opposes TTIP. There are also many agricultural companies expressing their opposition to TTIP. Over and above this we are not, to date, aware of any sector-specific activities.
Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten, 8.10.2015: “Corporates Only to Benefit, SMEs Mobilise Against TTIP”