US and EU to hold Trade and Technology Council meeting

The United States-European Union Trade and Technology Council (TTC) will hold its inaugural meeting in Pittsburgh today. The TTC, announced

EU US trade meeting

Photo: Francois Lenoir/Reuters

The United States-European Union Trade and Technology Council (TTC) will hold its inaugural meeting in Pittsburgh today.

The TTC, announced at June’s US-EU summit in Brussels, is intended to coordinate US and EU policy in a number of areas, including data governance, supply-chain security and export controls. The TTC follows several previous attempts to align policies, including the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

It was uncertain for some time whether this meeting would go ahead due to French anger over a recent joint US-UK-Australia security pact which scuttled a $40 billion submarine deal it had made with Canberra. Furthermore, a divide over policy towards China presents challenges. While Washington intends to use the TTC against China, Brussels is leery of confrontation with Beijing.

The TTC’s future is uncertain in both the short- and long-term. In the short-term, the next summit is scheduled to be in Europe in March, during France’s EU presidency term. If these talks produce little, and French frustration persists, Paris will likely use that position to impair the talks. In the longer-term, unless the two sides can come to an arrangement regarding China that benefits both, the TTC will likely dissipate.

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