Last Update 21:59
Tuesday, 19 November 2019

US must join us in trade tango, urges EU trade chief nominee

Reuters , Monday 30 Sep 2019
Views: 845
Views: 845

The United States needs to realise it has deep economic ties with Europe and shared concerns on China and should work more as a partner on trade issues, the candidate to become the next EU trade chief said on Monday.

Irishman Phil Hogan, nominated to be EU trade commissioner for the next five years, fielded a series of questions from lawmakers during a hearing at the European Parliament, including on strained transatlantic ties.

"During the moments of heightened tension we must not lose sight of the big picture. We trade 3 billion euros ($3.3 billion) a day with the United States and the EU-US relationship remains the largest and deepest economic relationship in the world," Hogan said.

Hogan pointed to an agreement between US President Donald Trump and European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker in July 2018 to deepen economic ties and avoid further tariff hikes, such as threatened by Trump on EU car imports.

"Unfortunately we have not seen much movement on that agenda since then," he said.

Washington and Brussels aimed to negotiate an agreement to remove tariffs on industrial goods, but are in a stalemate as the United States says agriculture must be included, while the EU insists it cannot.

Hogan, who is currently commissioner for agriculture, said a major task would be to persuade Washington to work towards a balanced and a more mutually beneficial partnership, adding "But it takes two to tango".

The candidate commissioner said the key would be to stress areas of common interest and successes, such as a deal in August to sell more U.S. beef to Europe.

Hogan said the EU shared many of the concerns of the United States, notably the state control and subsidies of "one particular country that we all know about" - a clear reference to China.

"That approach can lead to various agreements benefiting both sides and I hope that the United States can see that," Hogan said.

The European Parliament is holding a series of hearings with the proposed team of the next Commission president, Ursula von der Leyen, and will vote on that team before it can take office for five years from Nov. 1. ($1 = 0.9177 euros) 

Short link:


Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

© 2010 Ahram Online.