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United States, European Union Advance Work to Promote Open, Transparent, and Non-Discriminatory Investment Policies

October 24, 2012

Washington, D.C. – Today, the United States and the European Union (EU) convened a meeting of the Working Group on Investment, a dialogue of senior officials under the auspices of the Transatlantic Economic Council. The meeting was led for the United States by Assistant U.S. Trade Representatives Christine Bliss and L. Daniel Mullaney, and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs Deborah McCarthy, and for the European Union by the European Commission’s Director of Services and Investment, Intellectual Property and Public Procurement Rupert Schlegelmilch. The two sides discussed global investment policy and third country issues of common concern, and reaffirmed their shared commitment to maintaining and promoting investment policies that are open, transparent and non-discriminatory, including through the negotiation of high-standard international investment agreements. In line with these objectives, the United States and the European Union continue to promote their Shared Principles for International Investment, agreed upon earlier this year.

Background: In April 2012, the United States and EU announced a set of Shared Principles for International Investment. The principles embody a number of shared core values, including a commitment to open and non-discriminatory investment policies, a level competitive playing field, strong protections for investors and their investments, neutral and binding international dispute settlement, strong rules on transparency and public participation, responsible business conduct, and narrowly-tailored reviews of national security considerations. The joint statement recognizes that governments can fully embrace these principles without compromising their ability to regulate in the public interest.

The United States and the European Union are the world's largest sources and destinations for foreign investment. Transatlantic investment benefits companies and workers by creating high-paying jobs, boosting exports, and spurring innovation in both the United States and the European Union.