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EU-US international relations

Taking goods and services together, the EU and the US account for the largest bilateral trade relationship in the world. The EU and the US jointly represent 10 per cent of the world's population and account for roughly 40 per cent of world trade and over 60 per cent of world GDP. The economic aspect to the EU-US relationship has therefore been crucial in developing the direction of joint policy. This page provides an overview and guide to some of the treaties and official organisations connected with EU-US relations, and some recent published works on the subject available in our Social Sciences Reading Room.

The US mission to the European Union (USEU) was established in 1961 with the European Communities (the forerunner to the EU). Its aim is to establish activities which work to strengthen the transatlantic relationship. The USEU forms part of a network of US organisations which liaise with Brussels on transatlantic and international issues. For example, the European Commission has been represented in the US since 1954 by a delegation in Washington. A separate delegation in New York acts as observer to the United Nations.

Transatlantic liaison

Regular summits between the EU and the US have taken place since the 1990 Transatlantic declaration formalised common goals of the US and EU. Recent summits have included discussion on issues seemingly beyond the transatlantic economy such as climate change and the Middle East. The Common Foreign and Security Policy and Defence Policy agencies of the EU have been important in establishing the role of Europe in broader international issues of security and defence about which the US has particular interest.

In 1995 President Clinton signed the New Transatlantic Agenda (NTA). This provided for further joint action between the US and EU in the areas of peace, stability and global development. The resulting Transatlantic Economic Partnership was launched in 1998 in order to expand cooperation and dialogue about trade and investment. The Transatlantic Business Dialogue and Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue support this cooperation. More information on bilateral trade issues can be found on the EC Trade Issues web pages.

The US Office of International Affairs has responsibility for monitoring international economic development which may impact on US policy. It works closely with international financial institutions such as the IMF, World Bank and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development to ensure that US policies are reflected in their activities.

Finding publications on EU-US international relations

You may wish to Explore the British Library for publications relevant to research on EU-US relations. Entering some or a combination of the below keywords may assist you in finding relevant material:
; EU-US; Europe; United States; foreign relations; governance; Americanization; partnership

Use our guides to European Union and United States official publications to help you start searching for official publications on EU-US relations.

You will find the following books on our open shelves in the Social Sciences Reading Room:

Anderson, Stephanie. B. Crafting EU security policy: in pursuit of a European Identity.
Lynne Reiner, 2008
shelfmark: SPIS 355.03354

Friexas, Xavier., Hartmann, Phillip., & Mayer, Colin. (eds.) Handbook of European financial markets and institutions.
Oxford University Press, 2008
shelfmark: SPIS 332.094

Ilgen, Thomas.L. (ed.) Hard power, soft power, and the future of transatlantic relations.
Ashgate, 2006
shelfmark: SPIS 327.407309051

Levy, Daniel., Pensky, Max. & Torpey, John. Old Europe, new Europe, core Europe: transatlantic relations after the Iraq war.
Verso, 2005
shelfmark: SPIS 327.4073

Redwood, John. Superpower struggles; mighty America, faltering Europe, rising Asia.
Palgrave Macmillan, 2005
shelfmark: SPIS 327.1

H.M. Customs and Excise Tariff and Statistical Office. Overseas trade statistics. United Kingdom trade with countries outside the European Community.
HMSO: 1999 to date (published monthly)
shelfmark: SPIS National Statistics Collection (most recent 5 years)

Further information

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