What We’re Reading | November 19

TTIP Action aggregates the latest news and best analysis from across the United States and European Union on the ongoing negotiations for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

Speeches & Official Announcements

Speech by Trade Commissioner De Gucht: TTIP: The New EU-US Commercial Relationship (PDF) | European Commission
At an event hosted by the Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce in Zurich, Commissioner Karel De Gucht explained that TTIP will have global reach not only because it involves the world’s two largest economies, but also due to the fact that together the US and EU will be able to shape global rules and standards. Ultimately this should help third countries, like Switzerland, who will have a single set of regulations to follow for both markets.

Secretary Kerry’s Remarks With Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu | US State Department
During Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu’s visit to Washington on Monday, Secretary Kerry joined the minister to discuss the state of US-Turkey relations. Among other announcements, Kerry emphasized the importance of the high-level committee headed by the US Trade Representative and Turkish Minister of Economy who will monitor TTIP negotiations and ways to strengthen ties between the US and Turkey. 


Trade Talks Must Include Currency, Says Senior Democrat Xavier Becerra | Financial Times
Last week President Obama faced backlash from his own party over concerns surrounding the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the President’s plans to secure “fast track” trade promotion authority. California Representative Xavier Becerra argues that measures against currency manipulation need to be included in trade agreements. Mr. Becerra believes that the US should aim to remove “those hidden traps that make it really difficult to make trade work,” including abusive currency manipulation.

Angela Merkel Says Spy Scandal is Testing EU-US Trade Talks | Financial Times
Chancellor Merkel is urging Washington to provide some clarifications on the scope of its international data collection program in order to rebuild transatlantic trust in the wake of the ongoing scandal. Germany is split between historically-fueled fears of privacy violation, and the needs of its export-oriented economy. Negotiations are being put to the test, but the relationship between the US and EU is proving resilient as negotiations continue.

EU and US Edge Forward in Second Round of Free Trade Talks | London South East
EU chief negotiator Ignacio Garcia Bercero and US chief negotiator Dan Mullaney both expressed satisfaction following the conclusion of the second round of TTIP negotiations. Discussions focused on comparing US and EU approaches on investment liberalization and protection, and establishing a common approach regarding market access in the services sector. Additionally, it was announced that financial services sector cooperation – which the EU has been strongly pushing for – will be discussed at separate talks in Brussels on November 27.

Reding Hails ‘Constructive Meeting’ with US on Data Privacy | EurActiv
European Commission Vice-President Viviane Reding and US Attorney General Eric Holder held a constructive and productive meeting yesterday focused on transatlantic approaches to data protection, following revelations about US interception of EU communications. Reding emphasized that a constructive data privacy dialogue is both necessary and helpful given the amount pressure the NSA spying scandal is putting on both TTIP talks and the transatlantic relationship write large.

Recent Analysis

Will Congress Allow President Obama to Succeed on TTIP? | AICGS
At an AICGS event, former US Ambassador to Germany Philip Murphy expressed confidence that members of Congress will allow the President to successfully complete TTIP negotiations. Due to the large numbers of conservative-leaning states that would benefit from increased investment on both sides of the Atlantic, the ambassador believes that Republicans are just as eager for a TTIP agreement as their Democratic counterparts.

Upcoming Events

  • November 20 | The Benefits of a U.S.-E.U. Free Trade Agreement for Midwest Business, a discussion hosted by the Delegation of the European Union, Embassy of Lithuania, Consulate General of Lithuania in Chicago, and the American-Lithuanian Business Council. Click Here to register via email.
  • December 2 | The 2013 Mortimer Caplin Conference on the World Economy presents: The TTIP: A Multilateral Perspective. Register Here.
  • December 16-20 | Third Round of TTIP Negotiations in Washington
  • January 2013 | Stock-taking exercise between EU Commissioner Karel de Gucht and USTR Michael Froman

Employment Opportunities

Assistant Director, Transatlantic Relations, Atlantic Council

Image: US Secretary of State John Kerry and Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu address reporters after their bilateral meeting at the US Department of State in Washington, D.C., on November 18, 2013. (Photo:US State Department/ Public Domain)