Talking Trade: Stories of the Transatlantic Exchange

This is the first post in a weeklong #TalkingTrade blog series on the current transatlantic trade relationship.

By Allison Aaronson, Public Affairs Intern at the U.S. Mission to the EU

The Brussels EU bubble is a city that speaks 24 languages officially and wonk universally, where Eurocrats reign supreme and “alphabet soup” is as much a part of the local cuisine as waffles and fries. Of course, I say all of this lovingly. This summer, I have the privilege of interning in the Public Affairs section at the U.S. Mission to the EU, and so this city of acronyms, suits, and minute details has become my temporary home.

Featured imageIf there is one acronym I cannot get out of my head, it is most certainly T-TIP, short for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. T-TIP is often printed in bold on the front pages of newspapers (in 24 languages of course) and graffitied on city walls around Brussels. I wouldn’t be surprised if the hashtag was trending on twitter. While it is natural to focus on the current negotiations and consider what a final agreement will entail, it is also worth exploring the substantial existing transatlantic trade relationship that will serve as T-TIP’s foundation.

With or without T-TIP, the U.S.-EU economic relationship is already the world’s largest, accounting for one third of total goods and services trade and nearly half of global economic output  The United States invested €313 billion in the EU during 2013, making it by far the largest foreign investor, and the EU has long been the largest foreign investor in the United States. Most importantly, transatlantic trade contributes largely to the well-being of our citizens, supporting over 13 million jobs on both sides of the Atlantic. The U.S.-EU relationship also furthers a host of more intangible benefits, such as perspective-building educational exchanges that regularly lead to innovative and fruitful collaborative efforts.

Ambassador Gardner likes to say that T-TIP is evolution, not revolution. Over the next few days, we are going to dive into this phrase and demonstrate how the U.S. – EU trade relationship is already highly integrated. Our experts here at USEU will weigh in on the current situation in a variety of sectors, taking a look at agricultural, digital, pharmaceutical, and services trade.

Join the conversation on twitter with #TalkingTrade

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