Global growth, the Arab Spring and Iran’s nuclear aspirations are just some of the issues expected to top talks at the EU-US summit in Washington on Monday. Despite a clear US foreign policy shift towards Asia, American officials insist the relationship with Europe remains solid.
US Ambassador to the EU William E. Kennard said: ‘‘We are not turning away from Europe. We are focusing more on Asia than we did in the past, and frankly we’d like to see Europe do that more as well. Because as we see the emergence of important new powers in Asia, it’s important that we engage with them and we bring them into the system of global governance that has been pioneered by Europe and the United States in the last century.’‘
But Europe’s debt crisis remains a deep source of concern and is likely to dominate discussions.
Once wary of a so called United States of Europe, some experts now say the US is pushing for deeper not less integration.
Jan Techau Director of Carnegie Europe told euronews: ‘‘I think that the times when the Americans were sceptical about European integration and that Europe could pose a threat to them if they were more united and acted as one, I think those times are over. The Americans are very interested in stability here, and stable political conditions in Europe; especially now since they know that they will be affected if this continent goes down.’‘
Washington is expected to demand bolder action from EU leaders to deal with the current crisis and calm markets, fearful a euro break up could have deep implications for the US economy as well.