EU countries back start of trade negotiations with United States
April 15, 2019 03:05 PM NPT
BRUSSELS, April 15: European Union countries gave final clearance on Monday to start formal trade talks with the United States after months of delay due to resistance from France.
In the end, the EU governments voted by a clear majority to approve the negotiating mandates proposed by the European Commission, with France voting against and Belgium abstaining.
The Commission, which coordinates trade policy for the 28-member European Union, wants to start negotiations on two tracks — one to cut tariffs on industrial goods, the other to make it easier for companies to show products meet EU or U.S. standards.