What is TiSA?

TiSA is a highly secretive major new trade and investment deal which seeks to lock in forever the privatisation of public services. It is currently being negotiated between 50 different countries, and if you haven't heard about it, that's because they don't want you to!

TiSA, the 'Trade in Services Agreement', is a central plank of the ‘new generation’ trade deals negotiated - alongside TTIP, CETA and the TPP – by and for big business. Together they represent an unprecedented attack on fundamental human rights and democracy.

War on Want Executive Director John Hilary explains TiSA alongside John Pilger and Jean Lambert MEP, among others.

Secret talks

TiSA negotiations began in secret in 2012 after being initiated by the USA. Together with a group of countries calling themselves the 'Really Good Friends of Services', the US and EU have been key drivers in the negotiations. ‘Offers’ of initial negotiating positions were presented at the end of 2013.

However, negotiations were dealt a blow in September 2015 when both Uruguay and Paraguay announced they would leave the negotiations, citing concerns about the deal stopping them from being able to regulate in the public interest.


A first leak of TiSA documents took place in 2014. Shortly afterwards, while heralding its commitment to ‘transparency’, the European Commission published its offers online.

In 2015, Wikileaks released more leaked documents in three waves. The documents, accessible here, cover annexes including energy, financial services and public procurement.

Wikileaks has undertaken an analysis of its December leak of the TiSA ‘core text’, available here. War on Want allies Public Services International and Our World Is Not For Sale have also published a report entitled 'The Really Good Friends of Transnational Corporations Agreement'.

Building the fightback

War on Want has already joined allies, coordinated by the Seattle to Brussels Network, in signing a civil society letter to the European Parliament’s trade committee calling for an immediate halt to TiSA negotiations.

The letter highlights how TiSA aims to bring about broad liberalisation of sensitive sectors such as finance and public procurement, how it lacks transparency and accountability, restricts democratic decision-making, fails to protect workers’ rights and threatens public services.

Much like related new generation trade deals, TTIP, CETA and TPP, TiSA must be stopped!

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