EU agrees terms for limited trade talks with US

Associated Press |

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union countries have approved the conditions for negotiating a new and strictly limited trade deal with the United Sates, paving the way for talks to begin.

EU headquarters said Monday that the agreement will focus on eliminating tariffs on industrial goods only, and would not include agricultural products despite U.S. demands they be on the table.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker met President Donald Trump last July to head off a looming trans-Atlantic trade war after Trump slapped tariffs on imports of EU steel and aluminum.

EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom welcomed the agreement, saying: "We are now ready to move ahead into the next phase of EU-U.S. relations."

Malmstrom says this is separate from a previous trade negotiation, known as TTIP, which is officially "in the freezer."

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