• ITVI.USA
    15,415.310
    54.710
    0.4%
  • OTLT.USA
    2.761
    -0.007
    -0.3%
  • OTRI.USA
    21.110
    -0.300
    -1.4%
  • OTVI.USA
    15,387.520
    55.710
    0.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.ATLPHL
    3.300
    0.000
    0%
  • TSTOPVRPM.CHIATL
    3.140
    0.190
    6.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.DALLAX
    1.590
    0.150
    10.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXDAL
    3.330
    0.020
    0.6%
  • TSTOPVRPM.PHLCHI
    2.170
    0.020
    0.9%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXSEA
    4.080
    0.130
    3.3%
  • WAIT.USA
    125.000
    -1.000
    -0.8%
  • ITVI.USA
    15,415.310
    54.710
    0.4%
  • OTLT.USA
    2.761
    -0.007
    -0.3%
  • OTRI.USA
    21.110
    -0.300
    -1.4%
  • OTVI.USA
    15,387.520
    55.710
    0.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.ATLPHL
    3.300
    0.000
    0%
  • TSTOPVRPM.CHIATL
    3.140
    0.190
    6.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.DALLAX
    1.590
    0.150
    10.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXDAL
    3.330
    0.020
    0.6%
  • TSTOPVRPM.PHLCHI
    2.170
    0.020
    0.9%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXSEA
    4.080
    0.130
    3.3%
  • WAIT.USA
    125.000
    -1.000
    -0.8%
American Shipper

U.S. talks with EU on tariffs could revive TTIP negotiations, Ross says

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said that President Trump has ‘deliberately’ not scrapped the idea of reaching a bilateral free trade agreement with the European Union.

   The United States is looking at ongoing tariff exclusion talks with the European Commission as a potential segue to revive Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations, according to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.
   Speaking Thursday on Bloomberg TV, Ross noted that President Donald Trump has not stopped considerations for potential U.S. involvement in TTIP like he did with the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
   “That was meant quite deliberately and quite overtly as a message that we’re open to discussions with the European Commission, and he has signaled that several times since – at the G7, at the G20, and at various public addresses,” Ross said. “So the idea that there’s a willingness on the part of our administration to engage with the European Commission is nothing new.”
   The U.S.’s imposition of generally global 25 percent tariffs on steel and 10 percent tariffs on aluminum has “provoked” recent discussions with the Commission, the EU’s executive wing.
   The Trump administration has agreed to temporarily exempt EU member countries from steel and aluminum tariffs, which are set to be re-imposed on May 1, absent any further agreement between the U.S. and the Commission.
   “The President has suspended those, along with those to several other countries, temporarily, in order to give us a fairly brief time during which we can negotiate some settlements that will reduce overall trade tension,” Ross said.
   Ross and EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström spoke Monday, and more contacts will take place in coming weeks to agree on the “exact scope and framework” of the ongoing EU-U.S. trade dialogue, though the Commission isn’t viewing comprehensive TTIP discussions as a part of this communication, a Commission spokesman said in an email. The two are discussing the way forward on “issues of common interest,” including addressing global steel overcapacity, the spokesman said.
   “The European Commission is committed to engage in this process in an
open and constructive way,” the spokesman said. “However, it should be clear that this dialogue
does not represent the revival of the process for a comprehensive Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, which is frozen since the end of 2016.”

   Cato trade policy analyst Simon Lester on Friday Tweeted that he would understand if EU leaders were reluctant to negotiate TTIP with Trump, but that it “probably beats the alternatives.”
   Negotiating TTIP could be “the most productive approach to U.S.-EU trade relations,” Lester wrote in an op-ed that appeared March 21 in the National Interest.
   EU trade officials’ first task in any such negotiation should be to outline U.S. trade barriers faced by EU companies, such as a 25 percent tariff on light trucks, “discriminatory” government procurement policies, and regulatory barriers in financial services and other sectors, Lester wrote.
   It could make sense for a Trump administration that is wary of investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) provisions in free trade agreements to negotiate an agreement with no     ISDS, as those provisions were also a large reason TTIP encountered public controversy in EU member countries, Lester pointed out. The administration has also championed deregulation, an area that is ripe for consideration in the trans-Atlantic context, Lester said.
   “The EU is famous for its regulatory trade barriers, but the U.S. has many of these as well,” he said. “Both sides would benefit greatly from trying to sort out some of their regulatory differences.”

We are glad you’re enjoying the content

Sign up for a free FreightWaves account today for unlimited access to all of our latest content

By signing in for the first time, I give consent for FreightWaves to send me event updates and news. I can unsubscribe from these emails at any time. For more information please see our Privacy Policy.