On July 12, 2013, The European Institute welcomed The Honorable Eamon Gilmore, TD, Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade of Ireland, to discuss the achievements of Ireland’s recently completed Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Key among them were breakthroughs in the creation of a European Banking Union, securing the EU’s 2014-2020 Multi-Annual Financial Framework, and corralling support for a negotiating mandate for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

Click here to read the Tánaiste's remarks.

By Brian Beary, U.S. Correspondent for Europolitics

As some 60 EU trade officials descend on Washington this week to launch negotiations on a free trade agreement with the United States, Europolitics, the leading Brussels-based EU affairs newspaper, has just published a special section on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership or TTIP.

Entitled ‘Transatlantic Common Market – Opportunity or Pipe Dream,’ the report explores the core issues involved in the TTIP talks. In exclusive interviews, top U.S. and EU trade officials outline their respective goals and potential red lines. The supplement also offers concise perspectives from the other key players, notably from the European Parliament, the U.S. Congress, the business community, the trade unions, the World Trade Organization and China. It drills down into the nuts and bolts of the talks, with a dozen special features focused on individual sectors. They range from public procurement, an area where Europe would like to see America open up its markets more, to agriculture, where it is the Americans that are on the offensive in seeking to get rid of EU trade barriers. The report also examines sectors that may or may not be included depending on how the talks go, from commercial air travel to banking to the cinema industry to U.S. liquefied natural gas exports. There are, in addition, brief biographies of a dozen key Europeans and Americans pivotal to the TTIP negotiations and a statistical overview of the EU-US trade relationship.

Download the issue here.

On July 9, 2013, The European Institute welcomed a leadership delegation from the European People’s Party (EPP Group) in the European Parliament, including The Honorable Corien Wortmann-Kool, Vice President for Economic, Financial and Monetary Affairs; The Honorable Marian-Jean Marinescu, Vice President for Budget, Budget Control and Structural Affairs; The Honorable Jozsef Szajer, Vice President for Parliamentary Affairs, and The Honorable Manfred Weber, Vice President for Homeland Security, to discuss the future of European-American relations.

On June 19, 2013, The European Institute welcomed The Honorable Daniel Caspary, International Trade Spokesman for the EPP Group in the European Parliament and Member of the European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade, to discuss the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and assess the prospects for ultimate ratification by the European Parliament. A strong proponent of the historic initiative, Mr. Caspary called for a truly comprehensive agreement, a tight negotiation time line so as to finalize the agreement by the end of 2014, and urged business leaders from both sides of the Atlantic to help build popular support. Michael Smart, Vice President at Rock Creek Global Advisors moderated the lively discussion.

On June 4, 2013, The European Institute welcomed Philippe G. Nell, Head of the Americas Division at the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, to discuss the challenges that the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) will pose for Switzerland and its strong economic ties with both the EU and the U.S.  Calling the TTIP “a huge development in global trade policy”, Mr. Nell outlined the main options for Switzerland: negotiating a free trade agreement with the U.S. after the conclusion of TTIP; negotiating TTIP membership after the fact; or lastly, seeking to eliminate specific TTIP disadvantages for Swiss access to the U.S. market through the Swiss-U.S. Trade and Investment Cooperation Forum or multilateral fora.

Click here to read Mr. Nell's presentation.