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Secret trade deals ‘have helped the rise of the far right’

TRADE unions and NGOs called yesterday for an end to TTIP-style corporate stitch-ups which give “oxygen” to far-right demagogues like Donald Trump and Marine Le Pen.

The secretive trade treaties, which allow global transnationals to rewrite the economic rules and sue governments for laws that affect their profits, have fed widespread resentment, a joint statement by groups from Britain, France, Germany, Canada and other countries says.

Signatory Nick Dearden of Global Justice Now said: “Neoliberal economic policies have left vast sections of society on the scrapheap.”

But politicians continuing to push for the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (Ceta) with Canada had not learnt the lesson, he warned, arguing that campaigners need to “up their game in the coming months to stop the toxic trade deal between Canada and the EU.”

“Secretly negotiated deals like Ceta and TTIP, which vastly extend corporate power at the expense of people and the environment, are a recipe for inequality that far-right populists seize on to further their agenda of hate,” War on Want senior trade campaigner Mark Dearn observed.

The statement notes that, despite railing against the deals, Mr Trump “fully believes in deregulation, privatisation and putting profit before people.

“His economic policy will not help working-class communities.”

Instead, Mr Dearn urged a fight for a “truly radical internationalist approach to trade that will allow us to safeguard human rights and tackle climate change and inequality.”

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