Gemma Fernández. Journalist. @gemmafdz
The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), under negotiation between the European Union and the United States since 2013, would provide families with additional buying power of 545 euros in the EU and 645 euros in the US.
Once the TTIP is implemented, the EU economy is expected to expand by 120 billion euros per year, the US economy by 90 billion euros, and the rest of the world by 100 billion euros, according to research undertaken by the Centre for Economic and Policy Research in London at the behest of the European Commission. The negotiations aim to eliminate trade barriers (duties, unnecessary regulations, restrictions to investment, etc.) in a broad range of economic sectors with a view to promoting the purchase and sale of goods and services between the EU and the US. Along these lines, around 80% of the benefits would be attributable to advances towards a single transatlantic market, i.e. due to reducing non-tariff barriers and, in particular, liberalizing services and public procurements, as well as simplifying administrative processes and standardizing regulations.
The agreement, which is expected to be completed in 2015 (before US presidential elections in 2016), is designed to promote business growth and job creation, and the EU and the US also want to offer their companies the chance to invest in one another's economies.
The TTIP will cover more than 40% of global GDP, one-third of global trade flows and almost 60% of total global investment (more than 3.7 trillion USD).
As a result, exports of European goods and services to the US will expand by 28%, increasing total trade volume by 6% in the EU and by 8% in the US.
This will lead to less expensive goods and services in the EU: prices will decline because import duties on US goods will be abolished and the unnecessary rules that impose costs on purchases and sales between the two regions will be eliminated. Both the EU and the US are interested in addressing other issues, such as differences in technical regulations, standards and approval procedures at customs, which require time and money from companies looking to sell their products in these markets.
TTIP negotiations will also analyze the opening of markets for services, investment and public sector procurements, and may help shape global trade regulations.
TTIP: a tool for recovering Western leadership
According to an article by Federico Steinberg, senior analyst at the Elcano Royal Institute and professor at the Autonomous University of Madrid, entitled “US_EU trade negotiations: what is at stake?”, the agreement, more than anything, aims to recover lost hegemony.
"There's a reason—which has not been mentioned outright—that transatlantic authorities have decided to roll out this initiative now: to restore the leading economic and geopolitical position of the West, which is increasingly concerned about the rise and strength of emerging nations in the future of international relations".
Specifically, Steinberg says that "the new international economic and geopolitical panorama has been marked in recent years by the rapid ascent of emerging powers, which has led the Western economy to become more indebted, older, less dynamic and in relative decline. This has driven the launch of the TTIP to reduce barriers to trade and investment which, until now, had been deemed acceptable and even desirable".