Potential benefits to Irish exporters of 100 million Euro annually
11th March 2013
Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, will today (Monday) in Washington DC meet senior figures from President Obama's administration as part of a drive to achieve progress on a new EU-US Free Trade Agreement during the Irish Presidency of the EU Council.
Minister Bruton, who is Chair of the EU's Council of Trade Ministers, is today meeting with key figures in President Obama's administration in Washington including Ambassador Ron Kirk, the United States Trade Representative and Mike Froman, Deputy National Security Advisor for International Economic Affairs.
The meetings occur following the conclusion this weekend of a successful trade mission of 40 companies to Texas led by Minister Bruton, involving over 20 trade and investment-related meetings and events culminating in participation by more than 12 innovative Irish tech companies in the South by South West technology event in Austin.
In February, the EU and US agreed to launch negotiations on a new free trade agreement. The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership will extend beyond the removal of tariffs, to include the opening of markets on investment, services and public procurement. In addition, it will focus on aligning rules and technical product standards which currently form the most important barrier to transatlantic trade.
Minister Bruton commented: “A new EU-US free trade agreement has the potential to boost economic activity on each side of the Atlantic by approximately 0.5 per cent annually. This equates to a total of over €100 billion in additional economic activity.”
“This has clear benefits to Ireland where over 115,000 people are directly employed in over 700 US firms in Ireland. US firms contribute over €3 billion annually to the Irish Exchequer in taxes and an additional €14 billion to the Irish economy in expenditure on payrolls, goods and services."
"Ireland's exporters also stand to benefit significantly from a new deal. Conservative estimates put these benefits at over 100 million Euro each year."
“That is why I am in Washington today to meet with senior officials on the US side. The Irish Presidency of the EU is prioritising stability, jobs and growth. A new trade deal has the potential to provide a real boost to economic growth and job creation.”
“In my role as chair of the EU Trade Council, I will be holding a meeting for EU Trade Ministers in Dublin in April. If I can help forge agreement between Europe’s Trade Ministers on a common position, this will give the European Commission the mandate required to open negotiations with their US counterparts on a new deal.”
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NOTES FOR EDITORS
During the Irish Presidency of the Council of the EU, Minister Bruton is responsible for chairing or co-chairing meetings of the Trade, Competitiveness and EPSCO (Employment and Social Policy) Councils.
As well as chairing five formal Councils, Minister Bruton is involved in hosting three Informal Ministerial Council meetings in Dublin during the Presidency. The EPSCO Informal on 7-8 February was the first of these and will be followed by a Trade Council Informal in Dublin on 17-18 April and a Competitiveness Council Informal on 1-3 May.