IILJ Working Paper 2016/5 (MegaReg Series)

Participation in a New Regulatory Paradigm: Collaboration and Constraint in TTIP’s Regulatory Cooperation

Joana Mendes

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Regulatory cooperation is a core aspect of mega-regional agreements in liberalizing trade and investment, as it enables the parties to bridge their regulatory divergences beyond what is defined in the text of the agreements. It relies on institutional and procedural structures that entail both the mutual adjustment of domestic procedures of the parties and new international fora where regulators meet to negotiate and deliberate. In the case of TTIP, regulatory cooperation will be the setting in which decisions will be prepared or made on the differences between EU and US regulation that could be usefully overcome; on the technical requirements that are unnecessarily duplicated; on the standards that should remain in place because they contend with public policy objectives in a way that would not be compatible with domestic standards; on the areas that are too distinct to justify attempts at mutual recognition or other forms of regulatory compatibility; on the standards that both parties will promote globally. This paper focuses on participation, which in addition to information exchanges and regulatory impact assessments, forms part of the trio of “good regulatory practices” that constitute the procedural basis of regulatory cooperation under TTIP.