U.S. and EU partner on global trade and technological innovation

People standing around vehicles (© Rebecca Droke/AP Images)
European Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, Argo AI chief executive Bryan Salesky, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, European Commissioner Margrethe Vestager and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken at the Argo facility during a meeting of the U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council in Pittsburgh on September 30 (© Rebecca Droke/AP Images)

The United States and the European Union are committed to working together to increase trans-Atlantic trade and investment, strengthen their technological and industrial leadership and boost innovation, said leaders at the first U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC) Ministerial.

The goal of the TTC is “to create a compelling vision for global trade and technology that serves our people, protects our interests, and fosters a spirit of innovation,” said U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on September 29 after meeting with representatives from the EU.

“Meeting these goals will also reinforce democratic values and respect for human rights.”

Blinken, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo and U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai co-chaired the meeting, along with co-chairs from the European Union, European Commission Executive Vice Presidents Margrethe Vestager and Valdis Dombrovskis. They met September 29 and 30 in Pittsburgh.

The Pittsburgh ministerial signaled the high-level political commitment to advancing a positive U.S.-EU trade and technology agenda that reflects shared values, defends against authoritarianism, and delivers for the people of the United States and the European Union.

It also provided an opportunity to track the progress to date of the 10 working groups established by President Biden and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen at the U.S.-EU Summit in June.

These groups solve problems and advance work across areas such as climate and green innovation, information and communication technology, investment screening, technology standards, the misuse of technology threatening security and human rights, and global trade issues.

The TTC meeting focused on future U.S. and EU action to spur economic growth that benefits workers and small and medium-sized businesses on both sides of the Atlantic.

The United States and the EU account for a quarter of global trade and almost half of global gross domestic product, making the TTC a critical forum for supporting economic growth and democratic values around the world.

The United States and the European Union agreed to:

    • Maintain cooperation on investment screening and export controls.
    • Develop artificial intelligence systems that are both innovative and trustworthy.
    • Combine forces to rebalance semiconductor supply chains.
    • Address global trade challenges, including nonmarket practices.
Overhead view of people sitting around U-shaped table in large room (© Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)
U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and EU Commissioners Valdis Dombrovskis and Margrethe Vestager attend a session on the workforce at the TTC September 29. (© Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

“When we’re working together we have a unique ability to help shape the norms and standards and rules that will govern the way technology is used, the technology that affects the lives of virtually all of our citizens,” Blinken said. “We have an ability to set the pace, to set the standard.”

Secretary Blinken also visited American software company Argo Artificial Intelligence and the University of Pittsburgh Biomedical Research Facility.

Later, Blinken participated in a local labor roundtable, where he heard about the challenges and hopes of workers in the United States.

“Building a workforce that reflects the diversity of our communities and captures our strengths as a unified nation will be our legacy for future generations,” Blinken said.