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United States | Brussels, 16 November 2015

Transatlantic Economic Council: Cooperation on Innovation for Growth

Senior officials of the European Commission and the U.S. Department of State gathered on Monday 16th November to review progress, discuss new opportunities, and take steps to re-energise joint collaboration under the Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC), which brings together officials from external trade, regulatory, commercial and scientific agencies in the EU and the United States government to support innovation and growth. Jean-Luc Demarty, Director General of DG Trade for the EU, and Catherine Novelli, Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment for the United States led the effort.

The TEC has succeeded in fostering cooperation in a wide range of emerging sectors, including:

  • Developing common standards, test procedures and tools to promote universal compatibility and interoperability between electric vehicles, e-vehicles supply equipment, and the electric power supply infrastructure;
  • Creating prototype tools to support international interoperability of electronic health patient data summaries, and common curricula to train health workers in the use of e-health technologies.
  • Working together to better anticipate the demand/supply trends for raw material/critical material elements, and their conservation throughout the product life-cycle, supporting sustainable approaches and adequate supplies in coordination with government and external stakeholders.
  • Supporting development of our small and medium enterprises through the US-EU SME Workshop, most recently held on April 21, 2015, and implementing cooperation agreements on joint export promotion, and economic development through technology cluster mapping.

Mr. Demarty and Ms. Novelli intend to build on the success of the TEC and apply lessons learned to explore new areas for cooperation. They will discuss specific proposals at their next meeting in spring 2016. A full report of today's meeting will be published shortly by DG TRADE and the U.S. Department of State.

The TEC will continue to operate in parallel with the ongoing Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations.

Background

EU and U.S. leaders first set up the Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC) in 2007, to help guide and spur forward economic cooperation between them.

Since then, the TEC has enabled the EU and the US to share and benefit from each other's know-how and experience in a wide range of industries, many of them high-tech and science-based.

For example, EU and U.S. scientists and regulators have been able to work together on research into charging devices and smart grids for electric vehicles – leading to a common testing method for these systems.

In 2011, the TEC launched the High Level Working Group on Jobs and Growth. This led to the decision to start negotiations for the Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership (TTIP), which are now well underway.

Read the report of this meeting (published in March 2016)