TRADE in ACTION|Building a transatlantic marketplace

December 2, 2013
Onto Round 3!
US chief TTIP negotiator Dan Mullaney and EU chief negotiator Ignacio Garcia-Bercero shake hands after the conclusion of the second round of negotiations in Brussels on November 15.


Commentary

On Monday, December 2, the University of Virginia is hosting a very interesting event looking at TTIP in historical perspective here in Washington. Speakers include five former USTRs and several noted professors with expertise in trade policy.

I was fortunate enough to be asked to write the background essay for the conference, and would encourage each of you to take a look at both the agenda for the day and the essay. Please join us if you have time next Monday!

You can see the agenda here, and the background essay here.

Special thanks to my colleague Jordan Smith for all of her help in researching and writing the paper.

TTIP Action will be taking Thursday November 28 off as the United States celebrates Thanksgiving. We're looking forward to reengaging on the subject next week as we edge closer to an important moment in the negotiations as the EU negotiators rejoin their US counterparts in Washington the week of December 16. Happy Thanksgiving!

Speeches & Official Announcements

Remarks by Jörg Asmussen on Europe in 2014 | Council for Foreign Relations
Jörg Asmussen of the European Central Bank delivered the ECB's outlook for Europe in 2014. TTIP is an integral part of Europe's growth strategy which should serve as both a job creator and deficit-neutral stimulus package. Mr. Asmussen expressed his hope that these bilateral trade agreements (adding CETA and TPP) will revive stalled WTO negotiations.


News

Trade Liberalization: Grain and Thunder | The Economist

Both the TPP and the Doha round of WTO agreements are supposed to conclude next month. The benefit of a hard deadline is that it can make negotiators more concise, but on the other hand it can rush negotiations on important aspects of the deal. These deadlines are causing problems as negotiators have left the hardest choices for the end. [ The Economist]

Former WTO Head Urges Reform of Global Body | Financial Times 
Pascal Lamy, former head of the WTO, expressed his frustration with the years of negotiations wasted by the politically driven agendas of its members. Mr. Lamy argues that the Doha round negotiations should be updated to include issues like regulatory coherence, investment, and competition policy. Mr. Lamy underlines that the real barriers to modern trade are in regulatory divergence rather than traditional tariffs, therefore the WTO should be modernized to handle these sorts of debates. 

EU Accuses US of Improperly Trawling Citizens' Online Data | Financial Times
A European Commission review of the "Safe Harbor" data sharing pact will likely report that US companies have improperly handled the data of EU citizens. Suspending Safe Harbor is one of the most powerful weaponts that the EU could use to demand more information and policy changes after the NSA scandal. 

Government Relations, LLC Defends US Small Business in European Trade Agreement | PR Web
At a US International Trade Commission (USITC) hearing on barriers to transatlantic trade facing US small and medium-sized enterprises last week, Dr. David Ellison, representing Government Relations, LLC, testified in support of an ambitious TTIP agreement, stating that it would significantly benefit SMEs that are struggling to expand into the European market. 

EU-US Trade Deal Offers Hope on Reporting Convergence | EurActiv
EU negotiators are optimistic that they can secure a place for financial services regulation in TTIP as they discuss financial services with envoys from the US Treasury department next week. These talks offer some hope that TTIP will spur the US towards more convergence in international corporate reporting and the adoption of the so-called International Financial Reporting Standards of accounting. 

Recent Analysis

Trade Trumps Missiles in Today's Global Power Plays | Financial Times
Geopolitics is making way for geoeconomics. TTIP, along with other major trade negotiations, is a clear message from the West that it is moving away from the post-war era grand strategy of multilateralism in hopes of strengthening its ability to continue to set global standards through economic strength. [ Financial Times]


Upcoming Events

Monday, December 2 - The 2013 Mortimer Caplin Conference on the World Economy presents: The TTIP: A Multilateral Perspective. 

Third Round of TTIP Negotiations in Washington - December 16-20

Stock Taking Exercise between EU Commissioner Karel de Gucht and USTR Michael Froman - January 2014

Employment Opportunities

Assistant Director, Transatlantic Relations, Atlantic Council. 

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