How To Guides
- Childbirth & Education
- Legal Formalities
- Pensions & Benefits
- Property & Accommodation
Did you know...?
- Airports and Airlines Spain
- Paramount Theme Park Murcia Spain
- Corvera International Airport Murcia Spain
- Daily Brief - Friday 31 October 2014
- Mr Grumpy v Angeles Duran
- Meet Wincham at The Homes, Gardens & Lifestyle Show, Calpe
- QROPS 2014
- Spain Increases IHT in Valencia & Murcia
- Removals to Spain v Exports from Spain
- The Charm of Seville
- Gibraltar Relations
- Retiro Park : Madrid
- Wincham announce opening of Marbella office
- Community Insurance in Spain
- Calendar Girls
- Considerations when Insuring your Boat in Spain
- QROPS – HMRC Introduces changes that create havoc in the market place
- QROPS – All Change From April 2012
U.S., EU pledge to reduce regulatory trade barriers
The United States and European Union pledged on Tuesday to work to reduce regulatory barriers that impede trade across the Atlantic, but said a free-trade pact was not in the cards right now.
"The goal... is to build on the already very deep and broad relationship we have between the U.S. and the European Union to find further ways to integrate our economies" said Michael Froman, White House deputy national security adviser.
He spoke after a meeting of the Trans-atlantic Economic Council (TEC), a U.S.-EU forum created in 2007 with the goal of creating a "barrier-free" trans-atlantic marketplace.
It was the first TEC meeting since President Barack Obama took office in January and came one week before Obama hosts European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso for a summit meeting focussed on economic and security issues.
The two sides agreed by their next meeting in 2010 to identify key sectors including labelling, energy efficiency and nanotechnology for increased cooperation on regulation.
They also announced plans for a new U.S.-EU Energy Council and to establish an "innovation dialogue" aimed at creating jobs in fields such as information and communication technologies, health information and clean energy.
Together, the United States and the European Union account for more than half the world's economic output and each is the other's most important trade and investment partner.
Swedish Trade Minister Ewa Bjorling said in Washington on Monday that she saw growing interest in Europe for a free-trade pact with the United States.
But Guenter Verheugen, the European Commission's vice president for enterprise and industry, quickly squashed that idea during a news conference with Froman.
"It's simply not on the agenda and I do not foresee it in the near future" Verheugen said. He noted the concerns that would raise among others about the commitment of the U.S. and EU to concluding the Doha round of world trade talks.
Verheugen argued a free-trade agreement would not address the regulatory barriers that are the real obstacle to expanded trans-atlantic trade, since tariffs between the United State and the EU are already low.
The meeting took place against the backdrop of a 20-percent rise in the value of the euro versus the dollar since March that has raised concerns among European exporters.
U.S. imports from the EU dropped 28.3 percent in the first eight months of 2009 compared with the same period in 2008, while U.S. exports to the community fell 23.1 percent.
Even so, "total commercial exchanges across the Atlantic amount to a staggering $4.4 trillion annually and more than 14 million workers on both sides depend on it" EU Trade Commissioner Catherine Ashton said on Monday.
Two-thirds of those commercial exchanges are investments, underscoring the huge stake each side has in the economic health of the other, Ashton said.
The TEC got off to a rocky start two years ago when it set a high-profile goal of resolving a long-running dispute over EU regulatory barriers to imports of American poultry.
The effort failed with Washington deciding instead to file a complaint at the World Trade Organisation.
"It was a big, big mistake" Verheugen said, referring to the decision to address poultry. "After a trial-and-error period, we now have a clear direction for the Trans-atlantic Economic Council."
Latest News & Stories
- Spain's most popular driving infractions : DGT report
- Spain to block watered-down Catalan vote on independence
- Pensioners sue Bank in Spanish IHT swindle
- Orange Spain brings 4G to Lorca, Murcia
- Banco Popular posts 2% rise in nine-month profit
- Spain to see Google Tax effective Jan 1st
- Spain 2nd highest inequality in the EU : Oxfam
- Spain's consumer prices fall by 0.1% in Oct
- Spain stock market regulator registers Orange request to bid for Jazztel
- Owners of Spain's Parques Reunidos consider sale