US To Negotiate Trade Deal With EU, Japan, UK

US To Negotiate Trade Deal With EU, Japan, UK

The Trump Administration has notified Congress about its decision to negotiate three separate trade agreements with Japan, the European Union, and the United Kingdom.

US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer Tuesday notified Congress of the proposed trade talks, which is mandatory under the Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015 – often referred to as Trade Promotion Authority (TPA).

TPA requires ongoing consultations with Congress to ensure that USTR develops negotiating positions with the benefit of Congress views. USTR will also publish notices in the Federal Register seeking input from the public on the direction, focus, and content of the trade negotiations.

Lighthizer said the government is “committed to concluding these negotiations with timely and substantive results for American workers, farmers, ranchers, and businesses.”

In the notification letters sent to House Speaker Paul Ryan regarding Japan and the European Union, he said US plans to start trade talks “as soon as practicable, but no earlier than 90 days from the date of this notice.”

Regarding talks with the United Kingdom, Lighthizer said it will begin “as soon as it is ready” after the Brexit, tentatively scheduled for March 2019.

U.S. goods and services trade with Japan, the world’s third largest economy, totaled an estimated $283.6 billion in 2017. The U.S. has trade deficit with Japan worth $55.5 billion.

The U.S.-EU trade value is estimated at $1.2 trillion in 2017. The U.S. has a $100 billion trade deficit with the European bloc.

U.S. trade with United Kingdom totaled an estimated $235.9 billion in 2017. Unlike the other two, the U.S. enjoys trade surplus of $15.9 billion with the United Kingdom.

The British government welcomed the move.

A top American think-tank recently hailed the conclusion of a new trade deal between the United States and Canada as a decisive victory for President Donald Trump’s unconventional approach to trade.

Washington based Hudson Institute said Trump kept the North American trade relationship intact by signing the new US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

Last month, the Trump administration also inked a trade deal South Korea.

But with three rounds of tariff hike as part of a deepening trade war, about half of all Chinese imports to the US are now subject to new duties, making them costlier in America.

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