The main ones of these “plurilateral trade agreements” are the Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), the Transatlantic Free Trade Agreement (TTIP), the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) and the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA). Although plurilateral trade agreements are binding only on signatory countries, they also concern third countries, as they will govern most international trade rules in the future. Mega-agreements have much in common: while public opinion and civil society have always been excluded from the debate and deprived of information, multinational lobbies have had great influence and time to convey their ideas. The agreements were therefore unbalanced and clearly based on the interests of the multinationals. Public Eye is convinced that the plurilateral approach cannot lead to a fairer form of international trade and also carries risks, especially for the poorest parts of society. Another sensitive aspect of the agreements is the strengthening of the protection of intellectual property rights. The aim is to grant even wider patents and longer validity periods, for example on medicines. As a result, drug prices would remain high and prevent a large part of the population in developing and emerging countries from accessing treatment, further complicating the fight against epidemics. In addition, the possibilities for patenting plants and animals would be strengthened, which would contribute to an even greater vulnerability of farmers to multinational agricultural companies. The term “plurilateral agreement” is used in the World Trade Organization. A plurilateral agreement implies that WTO member states have the choice to approve new rules on a voluntary basis. This goes against the WTO multilateral agreement, in which all WTO members are parties to the agreement.

The Agreement on Government Procurement is a typical plurilateral agreement. A plurilateral treaty is a special type of multilateral treaty. A plurilateral treaty is a treaty between a limited number of States having a particular interest in the object of the treaty. [2] The main difference between a plurilateral treaty and other multilateral treaties is that the availability of reservations in a plurilateral treaty is more limited. Given the limited nature of a plurilateral treaty, full cooperation between the parties is necessary in order for the object of the treaty to be fulfilled. Consequently, reservations to plurilateral treaties were not permitted without the agreement of all other parties. This principle is codified in international law by Article 20(2) of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties: a plurilateral agreement is a multinational legal or trade agreement between countries. . .

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