EU, US reset transatlantic relations

(VOVWORLD) - EU Trade Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis’s visit to the US this week is paving the way for the two strategic allies to sign a trade agreement next month. The trip, aimed at realizing the agreements reached at the US-EU summit in June, shows goodwill in resetting the transatlantic relationship.

EU, US reset transatlantic relations - ảnh 1EU Trade Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis (right) talks to US Trade Representative Katherine Tai and Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. (Photo:

The US-EU economic relationship is the largest in the world, worth one-third of global GDP, accounting for half of global private consumption, and ensuring 16 million jobs on both sides of the Atlantic. The US’s leadership role in NATO helps ensure the security of the EU and promote the European allies’ democracy and prosperity. And the EU plays an important role in reinforcing US political and security interests. Even when this relationship was at its lowest point during the Trump administration, Washington’s National Security Strategy 2017 said the US is safer when Europe is prosperous and stable, which makes the US’s priorities and values easier to defend.

Trade and investment expansion

The highlight of Dombrovskis's visit was the Trade and Technology Council (TTC) inaugural meeting on Wednesday and Thursday in Pittsburgh. The launch of the Council was intended to address some of the biggest joint challenges, like a human-centered AI regulatory framework, securing supply chains of semi-conductors, and counteracting the trade malpractice of non-market economies.

The US and the EU identified as a shared goal finding new ways to promote and deepen bilateral trade and investment ties. They pledged to work closely to ensure consistent international rules and standards so that trade and technology policies can propel broad-based growth for both sides in the 21st century.

A joint statement released on Wednesday said “the EU and the US reaffirm the TTC's objectives to: coordinate approaches to key global technology, economic, and trade issues; and to deepen transatlantic trade and economic relations, basing policies on shared democratic values.”

Tariff deadlock

During Dombrovskis’s visit, the two sides were hopeful about resolving some disagreements on tariffs. In June 2018, citing national security reasons, the Trump administration imposed additional tariffs of 25% on steel and 10% on aluminum from the EU. The EU quickly reacted by imposing tariffs on US imports like Harley-Davidson motorcycles, Levi's jeans, tobacco, corn, rice, and orange juice.

This time, both were looking forward to resolving the steel and aluminum dispute by December 1. US and EU officials agreed to work toward concluding negotiations on a new trade agreement. The EU trade chief said on Monday that he is "moderately optimistic" that the EU and the US can resolve their dispute over tariffs on steel and aluminum. One day later, he said the EU really needs an agreement by the beginning of November.

Since taking office in January, President Biden has been working to restore relations with US allies across the Atlantic. The just-concluded visit by the EU Trade Commissioner has sent a signal that the US and EU are ready to reset their ties.

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