Mardi 24 janvier 2017
COMMUNIQUÉ
Emmanuel MAUREL, député européen
Membre de la commission du Commerce international

Après examen attentif du texte du CETA, de ses annexes, de son « Instrument interprétatif conjoint », de sa trentaine de déclarations additionnelles, et après avoir multiplié les échanges passionnés avec des citoyens, des ONG et des organisations industrielles, j’ai décidé de m’opposer à la ratification de l’accord CETA, car j’estime qu’il continue de générer des incertitudes, des risques et des insuffisances.

La commission du Commerce international n’a pas été du même avis et a validé le CETA à 25 voix contre 15 (une abstention).

En tant que parlementaire et colégislateur, il m’a semblé inconcevable de donner mon assentiment à un texte vague, dont on sait que le contenu va encore évoluer, car la Commission, sur demande du gouvernement wallon, s’est engagée à modifier de nouveau le chapitre « investissement » du CETA.

De la même manière, le texte demeure flou sur la question de la coopération réglementaire: la commissaire Malmström a eu beau multiplier les déclarations rassurantes ces derniers jours, les garde-fous qu’elle invoque ne sont nulle part inscrits dans le traité. Il est pourtant indispensable de prendre toutes les précautions nécessaires afin de s’assurer que le « Comité conjoint » ne fonctionne pas comme un organe purement technocratique, dénué de toute responsabilité démocratique.

En effet, il serait inconcevable d’accorder une confiance aveugle à une Commission qui a déjà fait la preuve de son inconséquence lorsqu’il s’est agi, par le passé, de défendre les standards européens face aux lobbies industriels et au gouvernement canadien (sables bitumineux, décontamination des carcasses, perturbateurs endocriniens, etc.).

A ces nombreuses incertitudes juridiques, s’ajoutent des questions très légitimes sur le bien-fondé économique d’un tel accord. J’ai le pressentiment que la croyance déraisonnée de la Commission dans les vertus de la libéralisation des échanges comme outil de relance – peu importe si cela revient à exposer inutilement les secteurs vulnérables – risque de n’avoir qu’une conséquence: celle de creuser encore davantage les inégalités économiques et sociales !

Les risques du CETA, en cela qu’il s’engage sur la voie d’une libéralisation excessive, sont clairement identifiés. Je n’ai rencontré aucun éleveur, aucune organisation interprofessionnelle, qui se réjouisse des nouveaux contingents bovins octroyés à droits nuls au Canada. Je n’ai échangé avec aucun syndicat, aucune organisation représentative des services publics, qui soit convaincu par la méthode de libéralisation des services par « listes négatives ». Je regrette enfin que l’environnement soit le grand angle mort de cet accord.

A bien des égards, l’accord CETA s’arrête au milieu du gué. La commissaire Malmström, largement influencée par le Parlement européen, a certes fait l’effort d’apporter des modifications substantielles au texte négocié par son prédécesseur De Gucht, mais elle n’a pas su remédier à ses déséquilibres originels. On peut évoquer le chapitre relatif aux normes sociales et environnementales – qui a le mérite d’exister, mais qui n’a pas de force contraignante. On peut surtout mettre en avant la réforme du système de règlement des différends entre investisseurs et États, évidemment bienvenue, mais qui ne fera pas oublier qu’un tel mécanisme inacceptable en l’état.

Face aux signaux qui indiquent une lassitude croissante des citoyens, dans le monde entier, vis-à-vis des excès de la mondialisation libérale, la pire des erreurs serait de persister dans le « business as usual ». La meilleure réponse au mouvement protectionniste initié par Donald Trump n’est pas de persister aveuglément dans la même voie : il faut au contraire intégrer les critiques légitimes formulées – bien souvent par des citoyens progressistes et pro-européens – à l’encontre de la politique commerciale de l’Union, pour la refonder sur des bases plus saines.
À cet égard, l’approbation du CETA en commission INTA ne représente pas la fin de l’histoire. Le combat continue pour renverser le rapport de forces en séance plénière.

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