Commercial harmony is music for the ears of the liberal world

During President Biden’s Weekly Summit in Europe: the G7, NATO, US-Russia’s flow of bilateral summit summits, one of the least commented on may be the most effective. EU-US summit Last Tuesday marked the upward shift in transatlantic relations և earlier in the world’s influence.

The headlines focused on a more unique achievement: an agreement to end the long-running trade war over aircraft subsidies. Hi there, it’s missing out on what was really going on at the summit, really in the aviation deal. A five-year suspension of trade sanctions may or may not resolve the Boeing-Airbus dispute. It is much more likely that the conflict will take place, that good faith will be restored; both sides are committed to developing a policy guided by their common values ​​and interests, rather than the issues that divide them.

The consequences go beyond ordinary trade liberalization or the end of the tariff war since Donald Trump’s presidency. Europe և The United States is increasingly instrumentalizing trade policy, serving non-trade values ​​և geostrategic issues. This trend will now be much more systematic.

The summit statement made it clear that trade is becoming a common geopolitical tool “to help fight climate change, to protect the environment, to promote workers’ rights, to promote stability.” “, supply chains”, among others. Even when China is not mentioned, perhaps by European crunch, there is no doubt as to who is meant by “non-market economies that are disrupting the world trading system.”

The most important result is the establishment of the US-EU Trade and Technology Council. Think of it as a unit for the EU, which: suggested just that to the US Entry Administration in December. Brussels may even be a little surprised at how Washington has accepted the idea and acted on it. The council will include three members of Biden’s cabinet: the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Commerce, the Commerce Representative, various working groups from technology standards to data management to investment screening to security and human rights issues.

We can reasonably expect two positive results. One of them is a more consistent approach to managing the digital economy. This should facilitate the deepening of digital trade and data transfer between the two economies. It helps the United States move faster toward a more European approach to training private technology companies. The last sign of this change is Biden The appointment of Lina Khan, A critique of the market power of Big Tech as a regulator of competition.

Second, more cooperation in setting standards. This includes the Internet. The summit statement sets out “the goal of promoting a democratic model of digital governance”, but must extend to physical and technological standards. At a time when China is actively seeking it The formation of world standards prevails, a more closely linked transatlantic approach is a game changer.

In the past, I resigned to the emergence of the “splinternet” with growing digital barriers between the US, the EU and China, when they set different rules for the digital economy. I am now more optimistic that the regulatory fragment can be minimized across the Atlantic. This would drastically change the balance of influence on կառավարման elsewhere governing standards, putting pressure on China to adapt to the Western model rather than the other.

Of course, it remains to work hard. Both sides are jealous of their regulatory sovereignty and are aware of their rivalry. Moreover, previous incarnations of the Cooperation Councils have been disappointing. But today is different. The perception of shared vulnerability is greater, the Trump era is fresh in people’s minds, the sense that global economic rules are being rewritten rapidly is overwhelming. It is more promising to work together to write new rules than to try to resolve old US-EU differences.

None of this will make the EU-US conditional trade deal more likely. But that is not the point. In the 21st century, trade policy is increasingly focused on finding common approaches to internal regulation, smoothing trade flows, yes, but it is just as important in defining the world rules of the game.

The summit is blowing the whistle on Biden’s plan to show that the world’s democracies can work together to provide better results for citizens than alternatives promoted by the world’s strongest. With an intensified EU-US relationship, the old liberal world order lives another day of struggle, then some days.

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