This Weekend we got an update on the negotiating process Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, or TTIP and it is not good. Sigmar Gabriel, the German vice chancellor and economy minister clams that the negotiations have failed, even though no one else wants to admit it.
“In my opinion the negotiations with the United States have de facto failed even though nobody is really admitting it,” Sigmar said in an interview. The blame according to Sigmar is on the United States, yet the failure to continue with the negotiations effectively is the result of the unexpected decision of Great Britain to exit the European Union, changing the dynamics between the parties involved in the trade agreement.
“Brexit is bad but it won’t hurt us as much economically as some fear – it’s more of a psychological problem and it’s a huge problem politically… If we organise Brexit in the wrong way, then we’ll be in deep trouble, so now we need to make sure that we don’t allow Britain to keep the nice things, so to speak, related to Europe while taking no responsibility.” Sigmar added.
Sigmar Gabriel is quite the character in German politics. Earlier this month the politician showed a middle finger to a group of right wing protestors, and when asked to apologize he said that his mistake was not to use both hands.