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NFTC Calls for Continued Efforts Towards a Barrier-Free Transatlantic Marketplace
Date: 6/10/2008 2:31:00 PM
Written By: Jennifer Cummings or Eric Thomas,The Fratelli Group for NFTC, 202-822-9491

Washington, DC – The National Foreign Trade Council today released the following statement in support of the mission and work of the Transatlantic Business Dialogue (TABD), which met today in conjunction with the U.S.-EU Summit in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The overarching goal of the TABD, which consists of the CEOs of American and European businesses, is to establish a Barrier-Free Transatlantic Market with the freest possible exchange of goods, services, people, capital and ideas.  The NFTC is an official observer to the TABD and its Senior Vice President, Cathie Bennett, attended the meeting.

The TABD is one of the formal advisors to the Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC) established by the U.S.-EU Summit in 2007 to provide political leadership and guidance in support of transatlantic economic integration. The TEC is co-chaired by Dan Price, Assistant to the President for International Economic Affairs and Gunter Verheugen, Vice president and Commissioner for Industry and Enterprise. Both officials attended today’s meeting along with U.S. Trade Representative Susan Schwab.

“The TABD and TEC processes offer an important opportunity to resolve difficult market access barriers on both sides of the Atlantic. This is especially true in the regulatory arena where the U.S. and EU often take different approaches to regulatory policies,” said Bennett. “Provided regulatory action is based upon sound scientific evidence, different does not necessarily mean one or the other is wrong.  It means that governments need to recognize these differences, find ways to make them least restrictive and ensure they do not become protectionist barriers to trade and market access.”

During the meeting, the TABD urged that the TEC focus on four key issue areas of interest and concern to the U.S. and EU business communities: investment and capital market integration, intellectual property protection, secure movement of people and goods, and energy innovation and efficiency. It also argued strongly for mechanisms to ensure that the TEC process to eliminate market barriers continue through the coming transitions in leadership in both the United States and the European Union.

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Advancing Global Commerce for Over 90 Years
The National Foreign Trade Council (www.nftc.org) is a leading business organization advocating an open, rules-based global trading system. Founded in 1914 by a broad-based group of American companies, the NFTC now serves hundreds of member companies through its offices in Washington and New York.