After the failure of the negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) in 2016, the EU has decided to engage again in new trade discussions with Trump administration. According to the EU negotiating directives, the new agreement should address only trade in goods and the related tariffs, excluding the contentious area of agriculture and food standards. However, President Trump has been very vocal on the need for the EU to liberalise its agricultural market and, among other things, to lift the long-standing ban on American hormone-treated beef.
The benefits of an EU-US agreement have been highlighted by several economic studies. According to the economic analysis drafted by the European Commission, the elimination of tariffs would lead to cost reductions for economic operators and an increase of bilateral EU and US exports of 8% and 9% respectively.
The following months will be crucial to test how serious is the engagement of both parties. European stakeholders are expected to contribute with their views, in order to ensure that their concerns are taken into consideration during the bilateral talks.