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EU-US Relations: Trade and Investment

Perhaps the most defining feature of the global economy, the EU-US economic relationship accounts for more than 30 percent of global trade in goods and 40 percent of global trade in services.

We are each other’s main trading partners and goods and services, and together we have the largest bilateral trade relationship in the world. In 2012, bilateral trade in goods alone was worth $650 billion.

Our two economies also provide each other with our most important sources of foreign direct investment.  Close to a quarter of all EU-US trade consists of transactions within firms based on their investments on either side of theAtlantic.

In fact, U.S. investment in Europe is more than three times more than in all of Asia combined.

The overall transatlantic workforce is estimated at 15 million workers—about half in the US and half in the EU—who owe their jobs directly or indirectly to companies from the other side of the Atlantic.

Despite the impact of the worldwide financial crisis and recession, the EU-US economic relationship remains on solid ground and is more important than ever.

The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership

Launched in 2013, the current Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations between the EU and the United States are designed to increase trade and investment across the Atlantic by reducing and, where possible, eliminating remaining barriers to transatlantic trade and investment, whether they are tariffs on farm or manufactured products, restrictions on foreign service suppliers, or limitations on investment possibilities.

A successful agreement will generate new job opportunities for and growth through increased market access and greater regulatory compatibility, while facilitating the development of international standards.  By liberalizing most sectors of the transatlantic economy—including manufactured goods, agricultural products, services, and investment—a TTIP agreement will not only remove the main trading obstacles of the past, but also look toward the future: preventing new regulatory barriers; establishing mechanisms that enable a further deepening of economic integration over time; and enhancing cooperation for the development of rules and principles on global issues of common concern.

The Transatlantic Economic Council

Established in 2007, the Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC) advances EU-U.S. economic integration by bringing together governments, the business community, and consumers to work on key areas where greater regulatory convergence and understanding can reap rewards on both sides of the Atlantic.

Chaired by the EU Trade Commissioner and the U.S. Deputy National Security Adviser for International Economic Affairs, the TEC offers a high-level forum to address complex areas like investment, the financial markets, mutual recognition of accounting standards, and secure trade.  It provides the opportunity to defuse transatlantic trade disputes as standards are being developed, rather than after the fact.

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