Atlantic Council

TTIP Action

Faith and Skepticism about Trade, Foreign Investment
The Pew Research Center recently released its new Faith and Skepticism about Trade, Foreign Investment report which analyzes responses of people in 44 nations about the effects and consequences of international trade. According to the survey, overwhelming majorities in both Europe and the US hold the view that trade is good for their economy, but that there is far less faith in the specific benefits of trade. The survey illustrates a need for better communication of the potential gains and benefits of trade agreements such as TTIP and TPP in order to win public support. (Pew Global)

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Who's Who & Who's New?
With so many recent and upcoming changes to the core of the European government, TTIP Action will introduce several key figures, their portfolios, and their role in the EU over the course of the next several weeks. Today's edition introduces Bernd Lange, the new chairman of the European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade (INTA).

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Who's Who & Who's New?
Now that incoming European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has announced the proposed composition of the next Commission, TTIP Action will introduce several of the new commissioners, their portfolios, and their role in the European Union over the course of the next several weeks. Today's edition introduces Cecilia Malmström, the incoming commissioner for Trade.

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Big Cities Benefit from Free Trade - so why are Democrats Stalling it?
In her article, Nina Easton wonders why some labor unions are still opposing the conclusion of TTIP and TPP when it is exports that has been boosting post-recession economic gains and job growth in big cities. Data shows that, in the first two years of recovery, exports grew at five times the rate of output in America’s 100 largest metro areas and made up for more than half of those cities’ economic recovery. As America’s big cities have prospered under existing trade agreements, trade--especially with their NAFTA partners Mexico and Canada--has grown significantly in recent years, she concludes that the American economy and especially its workforce will benefit greatly from TTIP and a freer global marketplace. (Fortune)

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On September 8, Italian vice–minister for Trade Carlo Calenda presented the priorities of the Italian Presidency of the European Council of Ministers to the European Parliament’s International Trade Committee. He was joined by US Ambassador to the EU Gardner who was invited to speak on the state of the transatlantic relationship and TTIP in particular.

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Why Trade Matters

This great report is an excellent overview of the economic and strategic foundation of "an ambitious domestic and global trade agenda" for the United States, written by former Deputy US Trade Representative Miriam Sapiro. The underlying rationale of the paper is that it is imperative for the United States to strengthen its economic alliances to ensure US economic security and international stability. The article extracts four maps from her paper, which illustrate current US trade agreements, TPP member-countries, TTIP member-countries, and potential total trade agreement partners. (Brookings)
Download the full paper which emphasizes the geopolitical and economic necessity of concluding robust and ambitious agreements across both the Pacific and Atlantic here.

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After a Busy August, Time to Get to Work
After an August of so many crises and so little time, September promises to be a busy one in both the US and EU. Europe has a newly-elected president of the European Council and a new High Representative for Foreign Affairs in Donald Tusk and Federica Mogherini (pictured to the left), respectively. They take office just as the geopolitical situation continues to deteriorate in Ukraine and the Middle East. Then there are the disappointing economic numbers coming out of seemingly every European country, putting serious pressure on Mario Draghi and the European Central Bank to act. NATO's leaders are gathered this week in Wales for what seems to be the most important Summit in decades for the transatlantic alliance. Demonstrating a united transatlantic front will be essential in the face of ongoing pressure from Russia and ISIS.
On the trade front, TPP ministers are meeting this week in Hanoi trying to make enough progress to fulfill President Obama's stated goal of reaching an agreement in principle by the end of the year. Finally, the next TTIP round at the end of the month will be crucial; it will be important to demonstrate positive momentum heading into the US midterm elections. With any luck, Congressional debate and ultimate approval on trade promotion authority will follow soon after the elections.
In short, it's time to get back to work in Washington and Brussels.

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Discussing the Future of Transatlantic Dialogue on Data Privacy with Dr. Günter Krings
American Institute for Contemporary German Studies’ President Dr. Jackson Janes met with Dr. Günter Krings, Parliamentary State Secretary at the German Federal Ministry of the Interior, to talk about improving future transatlantic dialogue on data privacy issues. Referring to the recent NSA affairs, Krings stresses the necessity of an active US engagement to appease their German counterparts. The two agree that there is a need for a transatlantic intelligence cooperation for security reasons, currently exemplified by the crisis in Iraq. However, Krings suggests improvement of the transatlantic intelligence alliance on three points: enhancing dialogue between the partners, increased transparency of conduct, and a cost-benefit analysis of prospective activities of the intelligence community, particularly against our allies. (American Institute for Contemporary German Studies)

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A less Dovish Yellen, a more Dovish Draghi
The Economist’s analysis of the recently-completed Jackson Hole Central Bank symposium, compares the position of Mario Draghi from the European Central Bank to the one of Janet Yellen, chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve. Originally arguing in line with the dovish view that there was not any urgency to raise interest rates in the United States, Yellen has recently adopted a fairly hawkish view. Draghi marked a significant departure from ECB policy since the recession, stating that if “low inflation were to last a long period of time, risks to price stability would increase.” Draghi’s departure from his usual line of reasoning seems to indicate the ECB's increased willingness to begin quantitative easing to promote reasonable inflation and help provide the conditions necessary for sustained employment growth. (The Economist)

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TTIP - Debate: European Goals and Fears
In this video from Deutsche Welle, an international German broadcaster, Olaf Böhnke, head of the Berlin Office of the European Council on Foreign Affairs is interviewed on the European goals and fears about TTIP. Böhnke says that even though agriculture and food safety issues currently make the headlines in the newspapers, this is not what TTIP is really about. The interview ponders the question of whether the current debate surrounding agriculture is really about food safety or borders on protectionism. Although he thinks that the road to concluding TTIP will be long, Böhnke underlines that an agreement is of vital importance and in the best interest of both sides of the Atlantic. (Deutsche Welle)

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