US, EU search to spice up cooperation by way of tech

US and EU officers will maintain two days of high-level conferences in Pittsburgh this week in an effort to restore relations broken below the administration of Donald Trump and enhance cooperation on expertise points.

Pittsburgh, once home of the mighty US steel industry, will serve as the backdrop for the US-EU Trade and Technology Council meeting

© Daniel SLIM
Pittsburgh, as soon as residence of the mighty US metal business, will function the backdrop for the US-EU Commerce and Expertise Council assembly

The timing of the inaugural assembly of the Commerce and Expertise Council (TTC) is necessary, coming amid a world semiconductor scarcity. 


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The venue, the Pennsylvania metropolis that was the center of the once-mighty American metal business and which has advanced right into a tech hub, is symbolic, particularly as the 2 sides have but to resolve a battle over Trump-era tariffs on metal and aluminum.

The previous president cited US nationwide safety in June 2018 when he imposed punitive tariffs of 25 p.c on metal imports and 10 p.c on aluminum, which have been a thorn in trans-Atlantic relations since.

Washington and Brussels have made it clear that decision of that battle wouldn’t be a part of the discussions in Pittsburgh, nevertheless it looms within the background.

– Chip crunch –

The TTC was born out of President Joe Biden’s summit in Brussels in June, when he tried to restore the partnership, and reached a deal to defuse the longstanding Airbus-Boeing dispute, suspending tariffs on each side.

However newer stumbles have renewed doubt, together with the sudden US exit from Afghanistan on the finish of August, and the newer  announcement of a safety pact between the USA, Australia and Britain seen as a snub by Europe. 

There may very well be so much driving on the Pittsburgh assembly, past the official agenda.

The talks will likely be led by Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Commerce Consultant Katherine Tai and Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, and on the European facet by EU government vice presidents Margrethe Vestager and Valdis Dombrovskis.

The White Home stated the USA and EU are “indispensable companions” that may goal to “promote shared financial progress.”

The TTC has 10 working teams on numerous and at occasions sensitive subjects comparable to regulation of digital platforms, privateness issues, supervision of synthetic intelligence, controls on international funding, strategic exports, and critically the scarcity of semiconductors.

EU vice president Valdis Dombrovskis said this week's technology meeting could produce a statement on the global semiconductor shortage

EU vp Valdis Dombrovskis stated this week’s expertise assembly may produce a press release on the worldwide semiconductor scarcity

Demand for digital units of all types has exploded for the reason that begin of the Covid-19 pandemic, because of the rise of working and learning from residence, in addition to elevated want for residence leisure.

The chip scarcity has additionally hit automakers, as semiconductor producers, which at occasions have needed to quickly shut their factories as a result of Covid-19, battle to fulfill world demand.

Washington want to safe a take care of the Europeans on semiconductors, and Dombrovskis informed reporters in Washington on Tuesday there may very well be a communique on this topic on the finish of the assembly.

Raimondo stated the semiconductor scarcity is each an financial and a nationwide safety concern, and referred to as for investments in home manufacturing within the EU and United States.

“America created the semiconductor business. Twenty years in the past, we produced almost 40 p.c of all chips,” she stated in a speech to the Financial Membership of Washington. 

“In the present day, we account for less than 12 p.c of world manufacturing and we produce zero p.c of essentially the most superior chips.”

She referred to as on Congress to cross laws that might make investments $52 billion in home chip manufacturing, saying it would “shield People from comparable provide chain disruptions sooner or later.”

–  Confronting Beijing? –

Europeans additionally wish to produce extra so as to cut back their dependence on Asia. 

European Fee President Ursula von der Leyen has even referred to as it a “query of sovereignty.” 

Along with semiconductors, the perimeters are grappling with how you can work collectively to counter China and unfair commerce practices comparable to industrial subsidies and compelled expertise switch.

The Biden administration to date has continued Trump’s robust line in the direction of Beijing, preserving in place punitive duties on Chinese language items. 

Whereas Dombrovskis harassed that the TTC was not meant to focus on a selected nation, he has additionally urged cooperation with Washington to present the World Commerce Group extra tooth to take care of the issues posed by China.


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