Vital to Ireland that EU-US free trade agreement concludes this year – briefing


Vital to Ireland that EU-US free trade agreement concludes this year – briefing Brendan Foster, partner at Grant Thornton; Noelle O’Connell, executive director the European Movement Ireland ; Grant D Aldonas, former US under secretary of commerce

The EU-US Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) offers Ireland an opportunity to make sure its development of a strong institutional framework and investment in an educated workforce are rewarded, according to a former US under secretary of commerce Grant Aldonas.

He was the keynote speaker at a high-level briefing on TTIP and its implications for US investment in Ireland hosted by Grant Thornton in association with European Movement Ireland this morning in Dublin.

Irish exports to the US are worth over €18bn, and according to Aldonas the TTIP will help further stimulate economic growth between Ireland and the US, and provide confidence and stability for US firms investing in Ireland.

The TTIP negotiations began in July 2013 and are on-going with a goal of completing the process by the end of this year. If successfully concluded, TTIP would be the biggest bilateral trade deal ever negotiated covering more than 40pc of global GDP.

“It’s vital US and European politicians take the initiative this year to make progress,” Aldonas said.

“The US and EU require complementary policies such as tax reform and domestic intellectual property rules that reinforce the ability to compete in the new transatlantic marketplace.

“Ireland’s reputation as a country with strong IP rights plays a critical role in that process and its ability to attract a continuing flow of US investment.”