The HLWG Report on a Future EU-US Trade and Investment Agreement - A Short Comment

25-02-2014

The decision of EU and US policy makers, announced in early February 2013, to launch negotiations on a 'comprehensive, ambitious trade and investment agreement' has been widely welcomed. The EU and the US are major economic partners, together generating about half of the world's gross domestic product and almost one third of global trade. By eliminating customs duties and reducing non-tariff barriers, liberalising bilateral commercial relations further is expected to lead to sustainable economic growth and additional jobs on both sides of the Atlantic. The final report of the High-Level Working on Jobs and Growth (HLWG) defines the scope of future EU-US negotiations. Implementing the HLWG's recommendations should lead to a better-integrated transatlantic marketplace, which Members of the European Parliament have been demanding for years. A far-reaching transatlantic agreement may have positive spillover effects regarding third countries —and notably emerging ones — and may help to restore the leadership that the EU and the US once enjoyed in international trade and investment matters. Given the complexity and the difficulties of some topics, especially in the field of agriculture, the negotiations will need the full support of both the European Parliament and the US Congress to be completed within the timeframe envisaged.

The decision of EU and US policy makers, announced in early February 2013, to launch negotiations on a 'comprehensive, ambitious trade and investment agreement' has been widely welcomed. The EU and the US are major economic partners, together generating about half of the world's gross domestic product and almost one third of global trade. By eliminating customs duties and reducing non-tariff barriers, liberalising bilateral commercial relations further is expected to lead to sustainable economic growth and additional jobs on both sides of the Atlantic. The final report of the High-Level Working on Jobs and Growth (HLWG) defines the scope of future EU-US negotiations. Implementing the HLWG's recommendations should lead to a better-integrated transatlantic marketplace, which Members of the European Parliament have been demanding for years. A far-reaching transatlantic agreement may have positive spillover effects regarding third countries —and notably emerging ones — and may help to restore the leadership that the EU and the US once enjoyed in international trade and investment matters. Given the complexity and the difficulties of some topics, especially in the field of agriculture, the negotiations will need the full support of both the European Parliament and the US Congress to be completed within the timeframe envisaged.