Some politicians have called for public services to be excluded from these contractual terms. However, experience shows that even where there appear to be exceptions, the definitions used for most of our public services may be too narrow to qualify. Article 1 of the WTO General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) contains clauses that completely exclude public services paid for by the government from the requirements of the agreement. However, only services that are not "in competition with one or more service providers" are not covered, so the NHS and public schools are unlikely to be covered, as private health and education providers compete with the state to provide these services. One study showed that of 44 attempts by countries to defend their public services with this exception, only one was successful. Another report states that in the United Kingdom, the only service likely to qualify would be that of firefighters, and that in other countries where there are private fire departments, it cannot be excluded either. TJM believes that TiSA should benefit at the expense of citizens and therefore joins trade unions and civil society organisations around the world in calling for the abolition of TiSA. In a closer position, TJM wants to convince the UK and the EU to withdraw from the negotiations by informing and mobilizing citizens and organisations to lobby their representatives. Fact: Under all existing free trade agreements, Canada will not make commitments for low-skilled workers within TISA. An independent consultant, Ecorys, conducted a Sustainable Impact Assessment (AIS) for tiSA. This study examines the potential economic, social and environmental impact of the agreement. The TiSA does not contain a chapter on labour or social rights, and when it comes to "individuals," it is generally related to the rules that apply for visas for work in the service sector.
The agreement aims to facilitate the hiring by companies in other countries, including domestic workers and contract service providers. However, these workers may be particularly vulnerable to exploitation: since their visas depend on whether they have a job in the destination country, it can be difficult for them to question poor employment practices or guarantee their labour rights for fear of being laid off and therefore forced to return home. In the United Kingdom, many domestic workers are already brought to the country on related visas and it is generally accepted that they are at risk of abuse, sometimes like modern slavery. Extending this system to other categories of service workers, who could be deprived of labour rights in the same way, and integrating this system into a trade agreement would be contrary to the UK`s labour and other human rights obligations. Mode 4: Due to the development of environmental services, knowledge and specialized skills in this sector are very important. At least TISA contracting parties are required to make commitments for intragroup purchasers in the environmental sector. Where possible, we ask TISA contracting parties to also consider obligations for business visitors, independent professionals and contract service providers (for the latter two categories, making commitments to the relevant professions related to environmental services). The TISA negotiations are open to WTO members, as long as they show the capacity and willingness to be constructive and ambitious.
The ultimate goal of the TISA parties is to extend membership to all WTO members once the agreement has been negotiated, so that all WTO members can benefit from improved disciplines and better market access for trade in services.