Kerry pushes for EU-US free trade deal
Tuesday 26 February 2013
US Secretary of State John Kerry, currently on an official visit to Europe, finds that a free trade area between the United States and Europe is a “unique opportunity” for both sides. With President Barack Obama, “we think this is something that can help lift the economy of Europe, strengthen our economy, create jobs for Americans, for Germans, for all Europeans, and create one of the largest allied markets in the world,” said the secretary of state, on 26 February in Berlin, just before his meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The United States sees an 18-month timeframe for an initial deal, before a new European Commission comes into office in 2014.
Earlier in the day, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle stated after his meeting with Kerry that it would be “advisable to advance sufficiently in the preparatory work to be able to begin negotiations this summer”. “A free trade deal would create growth on both sides of the Atlantic. It would create growth and new jobs and this growth could be created without new debt,” added Westerwelle.