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US-EU Trade Talks to Open Soon, Barroso Says

April 12, 2013

Negotiations over a free trade agreement between the EU and US are expected to begin in the coming months, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said Friday.

Barroso, who was in New York to participate in a United Nations conference and meet with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, said he expected the talks to start in the current first half of the year.

Barroso noted that the timeline depends on whether Washington is prepared to begin talks and whether individual members of the European Union give a green light for negotiations.

"I hope that we will receive the mandate in the coming weeks," Barroso said, referring to the European Union.

The proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership would cover a trade zone with a joint population of more than 800 million: 500 million in Europe, and 300 million in the US.

The talks could take years before a agreement is reached.

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Source: Copyright 2013 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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