The Bush Administrations trade agenda (global - the Doha Round - and
bilateral and regional agreements in Latin America and elsewhere) should
include expanded cooperation with the European Union aimed at closer
cooperation in global trade initiatives and at creating an open economic
relationship that is oriented to eliminating existing and potential
protectionist measures between them, an Atlantic Marketplace.
As developed economies, the U.S. and Europe share an array of concerns,
including the widespread loss of jobs in manufacturing to countries that
have significant trade distorting practices, such as Chinas undervalued
currency and high tariffs.
Europe and the U.S. should level the playing field with China and other
countries with distorted trade practices by redoubling efforts to reduce
worldwide tariffs on all merchandise to a maximum level of 8 percent by 2010
and then to zero by 2015.
Two-way trade between the U.S. and countries of the European Union -
advanced economies of comparable wealth and development - exceeded $1
trillion in 2002.
Even as existing barriers to trade between the U.S. and Europe are being
dismantled, considerably less attention is given to preventing new barriers
from arising to take their place, particularly regulatory obstacles.
The U.S. and Europe must act to create an Atlantic Marketplace,
a broad and open economic relationship, a key feature of which would be to
halt the emergence of competing and often incompatible regulatory standards
throughout both economies that impose an increasingly heavy and needless
burden on businesses that seek to operate in both markets.
Regulatory authorities and standard-setting bodies in both the U.S. and
Europe must establish closer cooperation with one another at the working
level to forestall the emergence of differences in regulation before they
become fossilized. Areas of early focus should include environmental and
health related sectors, intellectual property, banking, insurance,
electronic commerce and telecommunications.