Today, European Council gave the greenback to start formal trade negotiations with the US on two agreements. One is a trade agreement strictly focused on industrial goods, excluding agricultural products. The other is on conformity assessment to make it easier for companies to prove their products meet technical requirements on both sides of the Atlantic.

According to a European Commission analysis, the first agreement would increases EU exports to US by 8% and US exports to EU by 9% by 2033. That is, additional gains of €27 billion and €26 billion in EU and U.S. exports respectively.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said EU is delivered what he has agreed with Trump on July 25, 2018. Juncker added: “We want a win-win situation on trade, beneficial for both the EU and the U.S. Notably we want to slash tariffs on industrial products as this could lead to an additional increase in EU and U.S. exports worth around €26 billion. ”

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Full European Commission statement here.

At a news conference, Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said “I will reach out as soon as they wake up in the U.S…. and see if can have more clarity on when we can meet to have the first talks on this… We are ready as soon as they are…  We are definitely determined to do everything we can to finish this during the Juncker Commission”. That is, Juncker’s term ends on October 31.

Malmstrom also added agriculture is “certainly not” a part of the negotiations. And, “this is a red line for Europe and you’ll not find any mention of this in our mandate.”

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