The EU is one of the United States` main trading partners. Similarly, the United States is Germany`s largest export market outside Europe, as well as the market in which German companies invest the most. Negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) between the EU and the US have been suspended since Donald Trump took office in early 2017 and are not continuing. On 25 July 2018, the European Commission agreed with the US government on a trade programme to address issues of common interest. The agreed cooperation covers several areas. These include reciprocal liberalisation of trade in industrial products, with the exception of vehicles. Both sides are also considering measures to facilitate trade in a number of specific sectors (services, chemicals, medicines, health products, soybeans). In addition, the European Commission and the US government have agreed on closer cooperation on standardization and strategic cooperation in the energy sector. These include the objective of increasing imports of liquefied natural gas from the United States. The two sides also agreed on a dialogue on WTO reform and a common approach to addressing the global challenges of unfair trade practices.
The US government and the European Commission will refrain from taking action contrary to the spirit of their agreement, while work will continue on the common agenda. More information on progress in the discussions can be downloaded from the European Commission`s website. Following the discussions on 15 April 2019, the Council of the European Union has given the European Commission two negotiating mandates. It is a mandate to begin negotiations with the United States for an agreement on the removal of tariffs on industrial products and on a compliance assessment agreement. After these two terms, talks will be suspended if the United States imposes new special tariffs on EU imports. In addition, the mandate of an industrial tariff agreement stipulates that existing U.S. special tariffs on steel and aluminum imports must be removed before an agreement is reached. The framework for EU relations with Ukraine is established by the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (CPA) which came into force in 1998. In 2014, the EU and Ukraine signed the Association Agreement, which has been in the works since 2008 and aims to replace the existing Partnership and Cooperation Agreement and create a comprehensive and comprehensive free trade area. The political component of the agreement has been applied provisionally since 1 November 2014, as it falls within the scope of the EU`s powers alone. The part of the agreement, which provides for a free trade agreement, has been applied on an interim basis since 1 January 2016, including to the extent that the EU is the only one with the power to implement it. The first EU free trade agreements with Latin American countries were the 2000 Global Agreement with Mexico and the Association Agreement with Chile in 2005.
The Association Agreement and the Global Agreement go well beyond the framework of a simple free trade agreement and also provide a broad contractual basis for political dialogue, economic relations and economic cooperation. On 21 April 2018, the EU and Mexico reached an agreement in principle on key elements of a trade section of a modernised global agreement between the EU and Mexico. Among the details is the future exemption of tariffs for 99% of goods traded between the EU and Mexico.