Joint letter to Executive Vice- President Dombrovskis,

15 av EU-ländernas handelsministrar

Till Valdis Dombrovskis vice president i EU-kommissionen.

[…] If we could accelerate our work to conclude and implement negotiated trade agreements, we would bolster our economic and trade interests and increase the EU’s overall credibility as a serious trade partner. This would ensure our access to key foreign markets, our long-term economic growth, and our geopolitical standing in the world.

Russia’s war on Ukraine shows that the EU’s strategic choices do not take place in a vacuum, but in a global context where different powers and economic blocks are vying for leadership and new partnerships. This year, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) between ASEAN and Japan, China, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand enters into force. It is the world’s largest trade agreement and follows hot on the heels of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). This should be a wake-up call for Europe. With RCEP in place, Japan will have free trade agreements covering 80 per cent of its trade. The EU’s trade agreements cover only about a third of our external trade. With 85 per cent of the world’s future growth projected to occur outside the EU, we need to do better than this. […]

In conclusion, the EU needs to urgently continue to pursue an open and fair international trade policy. This forward-leaning trade agenda would be in the spirit of the EU Single Market – our greatest achievement. It would be the right response to the current security crisis and other global challenges. Läs brevet