The title of this priority - A balanced and progressive trade policy to harness globalisation - has been updated and made geographically neutral in view of the new political context and the new dynamism in trade talks with other important regions of the world. The Commission has reflected this reality in changing the name of its Commissioners’ Group on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership with the United States to the Commissioners’ Group on Trade and Harnessing Globalisation.
Trade policy gives the EU the opportunity to shape globalisation according to European values and interests.
- Boost the EU's influence in the world by attracting more investment, setting high standards in global trade, and projecting EU values
- Generate jobs and growth through well-balanced, progressive trade agreements
- Ensure a level playing field for European companies and workers against unfair trade practices
- Help EU firms – particularly smaller businesses – to compete abroad
- Support a wider variety of goods and services
- Make investment protection fairer, more inclusive and transparent
- Ensure that trade and sustainable development are complementary
The Commission upholds the work of the World Trade Organisation and leads efforts for its modernisation as it negotiates with global partners.
The EU has trade agreements with 71 countries, 9 of which were put in place under the Juncker Commission. This includes an Economic Partnership Agreement with Japan and a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement with Canada. The EU has been ratifying agreements with Singapore and Vietnam, reached a political agreement with Mexico and pursues negotiations with many other countries, including MERCOSUR (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay).
A new phase in the EU-US trade relationship was launched in July 2018, with both sides agreeing to strengthen cooperation and work to eliminate existing industrial tariffs.