The 15th round of EU-US negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) agreement will take place in New York City, from 3 to 7 October. The aim of this round is to make as much progress as possible in all areas of the talks, in particular in the regulatory cooperation and rules areas. Both EU and US chief negotiators will take a break from the talks to brief civil society, including NGOs and trade unions as well as business and consumer organisations, on the progress of negotiations. The event will take place on Wednesday, 5 October. In line with the Commission’s transparency policy, a detailed progress report will be issued in all EU official languages after the round. A closing conference call by the EU and US chief negotiators will take place on Friday 7 October. Registration closes at midnight (Brussels time) on 30 September.
At the conclusion of the 13th round of negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), held in New York in April 2016, discussions between the European Union and the United States had succeeded in covering all of the agreement’s chapters. The 14th round of negotiations takes place in Brussels from 11–15 July 2016.
On Tuesday 14 June 2016, PubAffairs Bruxelles hosted a debate on what TTIP can deliver for the citizens of the EU, with Mr Hiddo Houben, Deputy Chief Negotiator and Head of Unit, USA and Canada, European Commission (DG Trade), Mr Andrew Hotchkiss, President, Europe and Canada, Eli Lilly & Company, and Mr Yorgos Altintzis, Economic and Social Policy Officer, International Trade Unions Confederation. The event was moderated by Ms Poppy Bullock, Senior Correspondent at MLex.
We are most pleased to invite you to participate in an evening of discussion on what the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) can deliver for the citizens of the EU with our distinguished speakers Mr Hiddo Houben, Deputy Chief Negotiator and Head of Unit, USA and Canada, European Commission, DG Trade, Mr Andrew Hotchkiss, President, Europe and Canada, Eli Lilly & Company, and Mr Yorgos Altintzís, Economic and Social Policy Officer, International Trade Unions Confederation.
The debate will be moderated by Poppy Bullock, Senior Correspondent at MLex
About the debate
The European Union and the United States have the world’s most advanced economic relationship. To further this relationship, negotiations on the EU-US Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) were launched in July 2013. They are now entering a crucial phase with the ambition on both sides to reach an agreement by the end of 2016. During their recent meeting at Hannover Messe in April, German Chancellor Merkel and US President Obama have called for an acceleration of TTIP talks.
The last TTIP negotiating rounds in Brussels and New York have boosted momentum for a successful completion of a mutually satisfactory trade deal aiming at both promoting jobs and growth and creating new trade standards, while establishing an innovative form of cooperation which could be a reference for the rest of the globe. However, the negotiation process still has some way to go not least because the scope of the agreement is large and the citizens of the EU still need to be engaged, as some public concerns have emerged.
Commissioner Malmström will today be travelling to Paris to attend the OECD Ministerial Council Meeting today and tomorrow, which will focus specifically on measures to increase productivity in order to bring about inclusive growth. The Commissioner will notably take part in a session on the contribution of trade and investment to this important goal. In the margins of the OECD Ministerial, Commissioner Malmström will attend an informal ministerial gathering of a group of WTO members. Building on the successful ministerial in Nairobi last year, the goal is to reinvigorate the WTO negotiating agenda through new approaches and proposals across a range of issues that pose challenges for global trade. Commissioner Malmström will also chair a ministerial meeting on the negotiations for an agreement on trade in Services (TiSA), which takes place in parallel with the ongoing 18th round of negotiations in Geneva. At this meeting, the Commissioner will focus on bringing about a common understanding on the steps needed to bring this deal to a successful conclusion, following the Davos Ministerial earlier this year which called for a swift conclusion of the negotiations. In line with its commitment to transparency, the Commission published last week its revised TiSA offer. In addition, Commissioner Malmström will attend a ministerial meeting on negotiations for an Environmental Goods Agreement, as well as a series of bilateral meetings with important commercial partners. Today, before leaving to Paris, Commissioner Malmström will take part in a panel discussion at the European Business Summit on the topic of an EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), together with the Canadian Minister for International Trade Chrystia Freeland
On 1-2 June Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship, Dimitris Avramopoulos and Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, Věra Jourová will participate on behalf of the Commission in the EU-US Ministerial meeting on Justice and Home Affairs, taking place in Amsterdam. The EU-US Ministerial on Justice and Home Affairs is held twice a year with the aim of promoting Trans-Atlantic cooperation in the fight against terrorism and transnational crime and strengthening the rights of citizens in this context. Participants will also include the Netherlands EU Council Presidency and the incoming Slovak EU Council Presidency, the European External Action Service and a number of European agencies. The United States will be represented by Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas. Commissioner Jourová and Attorney-General Lynch are set to sign the EU-US Data Protection Umbrella Agreement, which will enhance the data protection rights of individuals when their personal data is collected for law enforcement purposes, and thereby ensure legal certainty for swift and efficient cooperation in the fight against crime, including terrorism. The EU and the US will also review the functioning of the 2010 Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty that ensures effective criminal justice cooperation across the Atlantic, as well as recent legislative developments in combatting money laundering and terrorism financing. They will also discuss migration and asylum and will exchange views on their respective visa policies, on information sharing in the context of security, on counterterrorism and the fight against transnational organised crime. For more information on the EU-US Data Protection Umbrella Agreement see the latest statement and Q&A.The signature of the agreement on 2 June will be broadcast live on EbS
Until quite recently, the geo-strategic view of Europe from Washington has been extraordinarily consistent since the end of the Cold War. At base, this view holds that Europe is important to the United States. But it also holds that Europe is the most stable, the most prosperous, and potentially the most self-sufficient region of the world. For the last three decades, the US approach to Europe has focused on getting Europe to provide for its own security and even, optimistically, to become an exporter of stability in its broader neighbourhood to the East and South. This view does not mean that Washington policymakers think Europe is unimportant to US interests, as Europeans often assume. On the contrary, US policymakers understand very well that Europe is the most important region of the world for the United States. This is reflected not simply in statistics that show that Europe is America’s largest trading and investment partner, not just in the fact that Europe is the only other center of democratic prosperity, or that the nations of Europe are America’s most powerful and effective allies. It is also resides in a more ineffable cultural connection. Americans see themselves in Europe. Relatively speaking, Americans do not seek approval from foreign audiences, but international legitimacy is still important to the broad American public. More importantly, to judge by the way outside opinion is described in the United States, the source of that legitimacy is clear. Americans look to Europe as the first outside judge of the legitimacy of their foreign policy and even domestic policy debates. It matters little to Americans sense of righteousness how a policy is received in Beijing or Moscow. European judgements, in contrast, contain moral worth and thus political weight in American debates.
At a pre-G7 Summit press briefing with President Tusk, President Juncker addressed a wide range of issues, including the recovery of the global economy, the EU’s multilateral and bilateral trade agenda and the state of play of the EU-Turkey migration deal. He also announced that given the success of the Investment Plan for Europe, he would propose prolonging the Plan behind 2018. Finally, he expressed concerns about the overcapacity of China in the steel sector calling for stronger trade defence instruments at EU level. President Juncker‘s remarks are available online. In the margins of the G7 Summit currently taking place in Ise-Shima, Japan, Presidents Juncker and Tusk on behalf of the EU,Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, French President François Hollande, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and UK Prime Minister David Cameron, issued a statement calling for the acceleration of negotiations on the Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA)/Free Trade Agreement (FTA). The leaders reaffirmed their strong commitment to reaching an agreement in principle as early as possible in 2016, and commended the work of negotiators for the substantial progress made over the last 3 years. Read the full statement here. The EU is a full member of the G7, and has been participating in all Summits since 1977 – for more information about this year’s Summit, a factsheet is available in EN, FR, DE and IT.
The European Commission is today publishing a report detailing the progress achieved during the 13th round of talks for a trade agreement with the United States, which took place in April 2016, together with its proposal on regulatory cooperation in pharmaceuticals, submitted to the US during this round. The publication of these documents from the ongoing negotiations on a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is in line with the European Commission’s commitment to enhanced transparency. The round report shows that negotiators made good progress in all three pillars of the negotiations, namely i) better access to markets for EU and US firms, ii) simplifying technical regulations without lowering standards and iii) global rules of trade, including sustainable development, labour and the environment and a dedicated chapter for smaller firms (SMEs). However, significant differences still remain, notably in the areas of services and public procurement. The proposal for cooperation in the pharmaceuticals sector aims to help regulators work more closely together to achieve better efficiency and thereby deliver benefits for patients. The cooperation would take place in three main areas: co-ordinating inspections of pharmaceutical facilities to avoid unnecessary duplication, reducing the need for medicines to undergo duplicate approval processes in both EU and the US, and supporting each other’s work on developing regulations in new areas which could lead to faster and cheaper approval of medicines. The proposal clearly states that both the EU and the US reserve the full right to regulate to achieve public policy objectives and protect human and animal health, and the environment. Also today, Commissioner Malmström will deliver a keynote speech on the benefits of TTIP for the European business community, at a conference hosted by the EurActiv Institute in Brussels. The speech will be available on the Commissioner’s website. A factsheet on regulatory cooperation on pharmaceuticals can be found here, and more EU proposals are available here.
The Commission has today taken further steps to increase transparency in its trade defence procedures and to simplify communication with involved stakeholders. Commenting on these steps that follow up on the “Trade for All” strategy launched in October 2015, EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström said: “I’m committed to making trade policy more transparent across-the-board, including for trade defence. With the on-going steel crisis, we need more engagement between the Commission’s trade defence services and everyone concerned, including small businesses who struggle with unfair imports. With these new tools to improve two-way communication, we hope for more contributions to help us better address the industry’s legitimate concerns.” A summary document will be published to provide background on each request for a Commission investigation or review of existing anti-dumping or anti-subsidy measures and further summaries will be published systematically. The goal is to help spread the information about any starting investigation to the public at large and guarantee that all interested parties can bring their contribution. In addition, the Commission will put in place a new online platform improving communication between stakeholders involved in the ongoing proceedings that will provide relief particularly to smaller companies