The EU and Japan seal free trade pact that will cover 30% of global GDP

Statement by Cecilia Malmström, Member of the EC in charge of Trade, on the successful conclusion of the final discussions on the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) – Brussels, 08 Dec 2017. (Copyright: European Union; Source: EC - Audiovisual Service; Photo: Georges Boulougouris)

Last Friday, after striking a life-changing Brexit agreement with the United Kingdom, the European Union managed to finalise negotiations on a major trade deal with Japan. Sources revealed that EU and Japan leaders were able to find a final accord on the telephone, after their respective chief negotiators concluded a meeting in Brussels and paved […]

US follows the EU in impeding China market economy status in WTO

A ship with containers at the port of Rotterdam. (Copyright: European Union. Source: EC - Audiovisual Service. Photo: Robert Meerding)

Trade relations between China and the West may be on the brink of a substantial turn. Last Thursday, the United States have formalized to the World Trade Organization (WTO) its opposition to China’s request to be recognized as a “market economy”. The move, which is strong enough to represent a gamechanger alone, comes amid a […]

Brexit: UK business fear of a no-deal scenario preparing for the worst

The Confederation of British Industry annual conference which took place last Monday in London was a chance for Prime Minister Theresa May to ask for more patience from the business world. Something though that seems to have been lost as negotiations show no significant progress and time presses both sides. A survey by the Chartered […]

European Commission determined to conclude EU-Mercosur trade deal this year despite French concerns

Despite the little space dedicated to pure international trade at the latest European leaders’ summit in Brussels, one of last week’s biggest takeaways is that negotiations between the EU and Southern America over a free trade deal may soon gain momentum. On Friday, right at the end of last week’s EU Council meeting, European Commission […]

Trump’s pounding of Iran less harsh than expected, leaves arrangement open

Trump did again what he has been good at. This time he pounded the non-nuclear proliferation agreement with Iran. To be reminded, this was the P5+1 nations (US, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany) agreement of 2015 with Iran , by which the latter country accepted to stop its nuclear program and be duly inspected […]

EU-India summit: Will the EU manage to sign a free trade agreement with India before Britain?

Last Friday, the 14th EU-India summit took place in New Delhi with both sides to jointly state that trade partnership is approaching rapidly and as soon as all conditions are met. The free trade agreement negotiations have started in 2007 but have not concluded yet as there are unsolved issues related mainly to market access. […]

Brexit: The Conservative Party drives the UK and Europe to a perilous road

The Tories, the governing party of Britain is falling apart, being deeply divided about the kind of Brexit their country should pursue. It’s not the disastrous political circumstances of Prime Minister Theresa May that blocks the negotiations with the European Union, but the chaos dividing the hard Brexiteers from their colleagues preferring a smooth partition […]

State of the Union 2017: Juncker’s optimism about EU growth and Brexit’s impact

It was last Wednesday when the president of the European Commission made his annual State speech address to the European Parliament pointing out the top priorities for the next year. Jean-Claude Juncker expressed his optimism for the boosting of the EU economy, trade, investment, cybersecurity, industry and democracy. The president of the EC respected the […]

The EU Commission vies to screen Chinese investment in Europe

Last week, Jean-Claude Juncker, the head of the powerful European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, announced a plan to screen foreign investments. The idea is to hold back or even effectively block business acquisitions or other investment plans financed by third country companies, in key sectors allegedly considered to be sensitive from […]

Brexit talks: Today the world to hear of a predictable failure

Last Monday’s events in Brussels were very characteristic of how perilously the Brits take the Brexit or more precisely how unripe they are to discuss this precarious question. When the two negotiating teams sat down for the first time to produce some tangible progress, the leader of the UK side, Brexit Secretary David Davis and […]

Trump badly cornered at home by agribusiness and steel consumer lobbies: Trade

Donald Trump, the real estate mogul and TV reality show star, as President, discovered the hard way that international trade is a much more complicated issue than he could have ever imagined. His poor cognitive abilities and his rampant nature didn’t allow him to realize that international trade is a much more complex issue, than […]

EU and Japan agree on free-trade deal and fill the post-TPP void

Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the EC, Donald Tusk, President of the European Council and Shinzō Abe, Japanese Prime Minister at the EU-Japan Summit (Brussels, July 6, 2017). Copyright: European Union; Source: EC – Audiovisual Service; Photo: Etienne Ansotte Last week, right before the kick-off of the Hamburg G20 Summit, the European Union and Japan announced […]

Human rights in Brussels and in Beijing: a more balanced approach needed

At the last United Nations Human Rights Council meeting, which was held in Geneva earlier this month, Greece shocked the world by objecting a common EU statement regarding the condemnation of  human rights violations in China. EU diplomats were not happy about that as it was the first time that the EU did not agree […]

The US may be “open” to reviving TTIP, while the EU designs the future of trade with China

After months of silence and no progress since the negotiations were officially put on hold, last week the TTIP reappeared on the main pages of the international press. According to US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership indeed would not be dead as of yet, and the US would be “open” […]

China dazzles the world with her Silk Road plan to connect, Asia, Europe and Africa

More than 30 political leaders and government representatives from 110 countries participate in the Belt and Road Forum China organizes in Beijing on Sunday and Monday 14 and 15 May. The Forum extended an invitation to all the countries of the world, the international organizations and businesses and aspires to be an all inclusive global […]

China invites the EU to a joint endeavor for free trade and order in the world

The European Union and China are to hold a summit this June, which is expected to shape their joint answer to the American protectionist and other threats. Last weekend, those threats prevented the Spring Meeting of the IMF to renew its commitment to free trade. The US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin alone blocked it. Before […]

EU and UK soon to be in a post-Brexit rush over free trade agreement with Australia

Last week, trade was one of the hottest topics on the European economic scene. The European Union and Australia made substantial progress towards the conclusion of a free trade agreement which has been on the table for years. EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström and Australia’s Minister for Trade, Investment and Tourism, Steven Ciobo, announced they […]

Europe eyes to replace US as China’s prime foreign partner

Last Tuesday, Rex Tillerson, the US Secretary of State, received in Washington the top Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi , in an effort to establish a “regular high-level engagement” with China, after President Donald Trump has practically destroyed the until recently multiple channels of problem solving and interaction between the two super powers. Obviously, Tillerson felt […]

EU Parliament approves CETA: the EU-Canada free trade deal sees the light in Trump’s gloomy era

After seven years of talks and remarkable twists, the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) was approved by the European Parliament last week. The EU lawmakers formally backed last Wednesday the landmark free trade deal which aims to eliminate up to 99% of tariffs on exported goods with Canada, by a vote of 408 to […]

Brussels to tear down the trade wall with Mexico as opposed to Trump’s “walls”

The European Union and Mexico have officially decided last week to accelerate negotiations on a new trade agreement and have set two additional rounds of trade talks in the first half of 2017. The European bloc and the Northern American country have long standing economic relations, but they are facing a very delicate moment, amidst […]

“China will strive to enhance the performance of economic growth”, President Xi highlights from the World Economic Forum 2017 in Davos

The first day of the World Economic Forum (WEF) began with the opening plenary with Xi Jinping yesterday, President of the People’s Republic of China, monopolizing the interest of the global economic status quo convening these days at the Swiss Alps. This was the first time ever a Chinese President accepts the Davos invite and naturally all the […]

Trade deals’ pure realism: it may take 10 years for a post-Brexit agreement

It was already a well-known fact that the UK had a bumpy road ahead before a post-Brexit deal with the European Union could ever see the light, but last week’s news are now showing that reality could be even more complex than that. Britain’s ambassador to the European Union, Sir Ivan Rogers, warned British ministers last […]

TTIP: why it is worth not to pull the covers over your head?

This article was exclusively written for the Sting by Mrs Mona Herter, Secretary General of the European Confederation of Junior Enterprises (JADE). The article is published in view of the famous Generations Club of JADE, which is taking place today in Brussels. JADE is a cordial partner of The European Sting. The opinions expressed within reflect only the writer’s views and […]

Will CETA be implemented after eight long years or it will be vetoed by the EU citizen?

It was last Sunday when the EU and Canada signed the free trade agreement CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement), despite the protest taking place just outside the European Council’s building. This deal is meant to create more jobs and growth through stronger economic relations. However, the approval of the national parliaments in Europe and […]

Can the EU afford to block China’s business openings to Europe by denying her the ‘market economy status’?

The way Wallonia, Belgium’s French speaking region approved CETA – the comprehensive economic and trade agreement between the EU and Canada – is a rather dark landmark. In the future, Europe’s trade and otherwise relations with foreign countries will be rather shaky. This was also true in the past, but now became evident for everybody […]

Who can compel Wallonia to unlock CETA, the EU-Canada free trade pack?

No, it wasn’t just the tiny Wallonia region of Belgium and its 3.6 million French speaking inhabitants who blocked CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement). This is an EU-Canada free trade and investment pact that took eight years to the Brussels Commission and the Canadian authorities to draft. It was also the Brexit and the […]

EU continues targeting on Chinese steel imports instead of the revival of its own economy

It was last Friday when the European Commission (EC) decided to impose temporary anti-dumping duties on imports of two steel products from China. Particularly, the duties concern hot-rolled flat steel and heavy plates of steel with EC’s investigations to show that Chinese products had been sold at extremely dumped prices. The Commission focuses on finding unfair […]

TTIP is not dead as of yet, the 15th round of negotiations in New York shouts

Despite the huge protests and the many critics of the past two months, the 15th round of TTIP negotiations took place as planned last week in New York City. With the American elections getting closer and a growing scepticism in the local European parliaments, many saw the EU-US trade deal as almost dead. Now it […]

The EU seals CETA but plans to re-baptise TTIP after missing the 2016 deadline

The trade ministers of the European Union, after their plenary meeting in Bratislava last Friday, may not have found a way to revive the interest around TTIP, but surely all agreed on one thing: negotiations on the EU-US free trade agreement will almost certainly not be finished before the end of Obama’s presidency. The key […]

EU Trade Ministers come together in a desperate attempt to save TTIP

After having been the stage for a critical European Union Summit, the very first one in a 27-member-States shape, Bratislava is now preparing to harbour a delicate meeting of the bloc’s trade ministers next week. The agenda will be formally all focused on the existing trans-Atlantic trade agreements, the TTIP with the United States and […]