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Public support for TTIP increases in latest Eurobarometer poll

Public support for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership has seen a little increase over the last six months, if one believes the latest Eurobarometer poll.

Approval ratings for the TTIP had been falling steadily since 2014 in the European opinion survey that is done every May and November. Yet the last six months appear to have seen a small turnaround.

The big picture remains the same: a majority of Europeans are in favour of TTIP. Germans, Austrians, Slovenians and Luxembourgers have the lowest support rates for TTIP, whereas Southern European, Central and Eastern European and Nordic countries generally massively approve of the transatlantic trade and investment pact. The only country that has seen an important drop in support for the TTIP is France, with 46 percent of the polled in November disapproving of TTIP, down from 50 percent in the last two Standard Eurobarometer editions.

EU-28-wide support for TTIP has increased by 2 percent in the last six months to 53 percent. The most important uptick in the share of polled asked if they are “for” a “A free trade and investment agreement between the EU and the USA” was seen in Croatia (+12 points) and Finland (+14 points).

There’s been an uptick in support in the traditional TTIP-sceptic countries. The share of people saying they are “for” a transatlantic deal in Germany increased by 6 points to 32 percent in the autumn 2016 compared to the spring. In Luxemburg (+2 to 38 percent), Slovenia (+7 to 44 percent) and Austria (+1 to 21 percent) support for TTIP has also seen an increase in support.

Negotiations towards a transatlantic trade and investment partnership have been put to a halt in the autumn 2016 after three years of negotiations. Lack of support for TTIP in large swaths of public opinion was one important factor contributing to the decision.

By Iana Dreyer