Transatlantic trade and investment partnership (TTIP) and the spill overs effects on the Gulf – cooperation council
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to examine the transatlantic trade and investment partnership (TTIP). The EU and the USA are negotiating the TTIP, a trade agreement that aims to remove trade barriers across different economic sectors to increase trade between the EU and the USA. The TTIP will have spill over effects on the MENA region, the GCC, Australia and the Asian sub-continent, as it raises key questions for intellectual property and international trade agreements. For instance, will the USA and EU be on an equal footing or will one triumph over the other, will third party countries like the GCC states be expected to adopt new standards. Design/methodology/approach The research design is a paper and online data collection method to find literature to date on intellectual property law development in the GCC states in relation to the three research objectives as set out above. The literature is the population, and this could prove problematic. Different databases have been used to cover all sources where data can be found. Findings As the EU-USA TTIP is aiming to conclude by the end of 2015, the GCC has an opportunity to reassess its relationship with both the EU and GCC. Up until now, the GCC was able to enter into negotiations with the EU and USA relatively independently. However, where the EU and USA can agree, there will be a harmonisation of regulations. This therefore has repercussions for the GCC. The TTIP has three main aims: to increase trade and investment through market access, increase employment and competitiveness and create a harmonised approach to global trade. To harmonise global trade, the EU and USA aim to harmonise their intellectual property rights through an intellectual property rights chapter that deals specifically with enhancing protection and recognition for geographical indications, build on TRIPS and patentability. Research limitations/implications This study is non-empirical. Originality/value The TTIP will have spill over effects for the GCC, as it has yet to finalise the EU-GCC free trade agreement and USA-GCC framework agreement. The power dynamics between the USA and EU will be a deciding factor on the intellectual property chapter in the TTIP in terms of what the provisions for intellectual property will look like and what powers will be available to investors to bring investor-state-dispute settlement claims against foreign countries.