EU lays out plan to revive US ties ahead of Joe Biden's inauguration

EU lays out plan to revive US ties ahead of Joe Biden's inauguration
Copyright Fabio Sasso/LaPresse
By Darren McCaffrey
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As Joe Biden prepares to take up residence in the White House, the EU is wasting no time in setting out its ambitions for the post-Trump era.


As the United States prepares to transition from one President to another, a transition is also under way on how the EU will work with the US. A reboot to the transatlantic alliance.

A draft plan from the Commission plans to revitalise that partnership, by burying the tensions of Trump era and focusing instead on working together.

The plan outlines five areas of focus:

  1. Fighting coronavirus
  2. Enhancing the economic recovery
  3. Combatting climate change
  4. Upholding multilateralism and shared values
  5. Promoting peace and security

The plan is attracting a lot of enthusiasm or those hoping for a rekindling of EU-US ties in Brussels.

"We have been asking and striving for closer relationship for so long and it has been certainly been testy times over the past four years and so this is a welcome development," said Susan Danger, CEO of the American Chamber of Commerce to the EU. She also stressed the importance of the transatlantic relationship for 'creating jobs, prosperity, growth and providing security on both sides of the Atlantic.”

While differences particularly on trade and the dominance of the digital giants will persist - not least of all on data protection and taxation, there will likely be a renewed, joined up approach to China.

"Obviously the Biden administration will play a lot more attention to a set of issues where the Trump administration was not that interested on human rights," says Ian Lesser, Vice President at The German Marshall Fund.

But he explains that Europeans shouldn't expect a softer approach from the Democrat

"It is conceivable that it will continue to get tougher and tougher."

The 11 page draft document, is an attempt to move on but also to move back to a more familiar transatlantic relationship.

Leaders will decide whether to endorse the plan at their council meeting next week, before a possible joint EU-US diplomacy summit next year.

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