ERJ staff report (TB)
Miles Moore, Tire Business staff
Washington, DC – The US and European tire and rubber product industries are in favour of efforts by the US and Europe to create a free trade agreement between the US and the European Union, which could serve as a platform for increased international standards harmonisation.
"There is some potential in this to achieve harmonisation," said Dan Zielinski, senior vice president for public affairs for the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA), of the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). "Harmonisation is something the US industry has long sought with Europe."
Transatlantic trade in tires was a $1.5 billion (€1.13 billion) business last year, according to US Department of Commerce data. The US imported $1.29 billion worth of car, light and medium truck tires from countries in Europe and exported $258 million worth.
President Obama proposed the TTIP during his 12 Feb State of the Union address. In his speech, Obama noted that US-EU trade accounts for nearly half of global economic output and more than 13 million jobs in both the US and Europe.
Obama said he sought to negotiate a trade and investment agreement that would provide significant benefits to the U.S. in terms of international competitiveness, jobs and growth.
The day before Obama's speech, the US-European Union High Level Working Group on Jobs and Growth issued its final report, making the same recommendations the president did.
"A comprehensive agreement that addresses a broad range of bilateral trade and investment issues, and contributes to the development of global rules, would provide the most significant mutual benefit of the various options we have considered," the working group said in its report.
The first round of TTIP talks concluded in Washington on 12 July, with more talks scheduled in Brussels this October.
The full version of this story appears on our sister publication Tire Business
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Article from Tire Business