U.S-EU Joint Statement of the Trade and Technology Council 2024

U.S-EU Joint Statement of the Trade and Technology Council 2024

Source: White House

4-5 April – Leuven, Belgium

I. Introduction

The sixth ministerial meeting of the Trade and Technology Council (“TTC”) took place in Leuven, Belgium, on 4 and 5 April 2024. It was co-chaired by European Commission Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager, European Commission Executive Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis, United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken, United States Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, and United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai, joined by European Commissioner Thierry Breton, and hosted by the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

The meeting took place against the backdrop of significant geopolitical developments and challenges, including Russia’s unprovoked and unjustified war of aggression against Ukraine and the escalation of violence in the Middle East, that have shaken the international rules-based order to which we are jointly committed. The United States and the European Union remain unwavering in our long-term political, financial, humanitarian, and military support to Ukraine.

There has been a buildup of global economic pressure through extensive non-market policies and practices. This accentuates excessive and possibly high-risk dependencies of strategic supplies, tilts the level playing field, and poses a threat to our economic security, our prosperity, and the well-being of our firms, workers, and citizens.

The acceleration of the digital transformation creates unprecedented opportunities for growth and innovation but also raises numerous risks and challenges that call for accelerating our efforts to establish joint leadership and continue robust coordination on our approaches for creating rules of the road for emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), quantum technologies, and 6G wireless communication systems. We aim to foster interoperability and support our common democratic values and the protection of human rights, while also promoting innovation. We are also dedicated to continuing to equip our workforce with the skills necessary to meet the needs created by rapidly changing technology, including AI.

The cooperation between the United States and the European Union continues to be the bedrock for dealing with such global challenges, and the TTC has played a vital role in shaping a forward-looking dialogue and facilitating unprecedented coordination and quick responses to key trade and technology related issues and developments, not least in the context of Russia’s continued aggression against Ukraine. We therefore reaffirm the importance of the TTC and will continue to refine and adapt this forum to advance our shared objectives.

We have used the TTC to address global trade challenges, strengthen our economic and trade ties, accelerate the transition to climate-neutral economies, and boost our economic security. With the Transatlantic Initiative on Sustainable Trade (TIST), the TTC is contributing to the creation of a stronger, more sustainable, and more resilient transatlantic marketplace and facilitating environmentally responsible trade in goods and technologies. We have increased cooperation on interoperability of digital trade tools as well as standardisation of critical and emerging technologies to reduce the costs of trading across the Atlantic. To boost our economic security, we continue to cooperate through the TTC to diversify strategic supply chains, including solar panels, semiconductors, and critical raw materials, and to reduce vulnerabilities, including those caused by other countries’ non-market policies and practices. We have also deepened our dialogue and cooperation on export controls and investment screening.

Working with stakeholders, we continue to use the TTC to advance the governance of critical and emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence, quantum technologies, semiconductors, biotechnology, and online platforms, including by supporting the development of rights-respecting international technical standards, codes of conduct, principles, and guidance. In particular, we call upon online platforms to ensure their services contribute to an environment that protects, empowers, and respects their users and the general public. We are working together to advance public interest research on online platforms, including to address particular societal risks, such as technology-facilitated gender-based violence. We will continue to combat foreign information manipulation and interference and to protect human rights defenders online, including in the context of elections.

We intend to continue our trade and technology cooperation as set out below.

II. Key Outcomes of the Sixth TTC Ministerial Meeting

A. Advancing Transatlantic Leadership on Critical and Emerging Technologies Artificial Intelligence

The United States and the European Union reaffirm our commitment to a risk-based approach to artificial intelligence (AI) and to advancing safe, secure, and trustworthy AI technologies. The dedicated coordination under the TTC continues to be instrumental to implementing our respective policy approaches which aim to reap the potential benefits of AI while protecting individuals and, society against its potential risks, and upholding human rights.

Our exchanges confirm our joint understanding that transparency and risk mitigation are key elements to ensure the safe, secure, and trustworthy development and use of AI, and we will continue to coordinate our contributions to multilateral initiatives such as the G7, the OECD, G20, Council of Europe, and UN processes to advance the responsible stewardship of AI. We encourage advanced AI developers in the United States and Europe to further the application of the Hiroshima Process International Code of Conduct for Organizations Developing Advanced AI Systems which complements our respective governance and regulatory systems.

With a view to ensuring continued and impactful cooperation on AI, leaders from the European AI Office and the U.S. AI Safety Institute have briefed one another on their respective approaches and mandates. These institutions today committed to establishing a Dialogue to deepen their collaboration, particularly to foster scientific information exchange among their respective scientific entities and affiliates on topics such as, benchmarks, potential risks, and future technological trends.

This cooperation will contribute to making progress with the implementation of the Joint Roadmap on Evaluation and Measurement Tools for Trustworthy AI and Risk Management, which is essential to minimize divergence as appropriate in our respective emerging AI governance and regulatory systems, and to cooperate on interoperable and international standards. Following stakeholder consultations, we have further developed a list of key AI terms with mutually accepted joint definitions and published an updated version.

We are also united in our belief of the potential of AI to address some of the world’s greatest challenges. We applaud the United Nations General Assembly Plenary Resolution “Seizing the Opportunities of Safe, Secure and Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence Systems for Sustainable Development,” that has solidified a global consensus around the need to manage the risks of AI while harnessing its benefits for sustainable development and the protection and promotion of human rights.

We are advancing on the promise of AI for sustainable development in our bilateral relationship through joint research cooperation as part of the administrative arrangement on artificial intelligence and computing to address global challenges for the public good. Working groups jointly staffed by U.S. science agencies and European Commission departments and agencies have achieved substantial progress by defining critical milestones for deliverables in the areas of extreme weather, energy, emergency response, and reconstruction. We are also making constructive progress in health and agriculture.

We will continue to explore opportunities with our partners in the United Kingdom, Canada, and Germany in the AI for Development Donor Partnership to accelerate and align our foreign assistance in Africa to support educators, entrepreneurs, and ordinary citizens to harness the promise of AI.


The United States and the European Union established a Quantum Task Force to address open questions on science and technology cooperation between the United States and the European Union on quantum technologies. Its primary objective is to bridge gaps in research and development (R&D) between the United States and the European Union, thereby harmonizing efforts in quantum technology advancements. This includes the establishment of a shared understanding and approach to technology readiness levels, development of unified benchmarks, identification of critical components in quantum technology, and advancement of international standards.

The task force continues work to address key questions that are necessary to reach an agreement on launching joint actions for science and technology cooperation in quantum, such as reciprocity in openness of quantum research programs and in intellectual property rights regimes.

Post-Quantum Cryptography Coordination

The United States and the European Union affirm the importance of the rapid mobilization to secure our digital communication networks against the threats posed by the potential for a future cryptanalytically-relevant quantum computer. Our joint work in Post Quantum Cryptography (PQC), feeding into the U.S-EU Cyber Dialogue, enables U.S. and EU partners to share information to understand activities in PQC standardization and in the transition to PQC.

The Road to 6G

The United States and the European Union share the belief that advanced connectivity can  facilitate a more inclusive, sustainable, and secure global economy. We concur on shared principles for the research and development of 6G wireless communication systems, and we recognize that by working together we can support the development of technologies and global technical standards for tomorrow’s critical digital infrastructure that reflect shared principles and values. We support open, global, market-driven, and inclusive multi-stakeholder approaches for the development of technical standards for secure and interoperable telecommunications equipment and services. On the road to 6G, in a geopolitical environment increasingly marked by tension and conflict, the growing requirement for security and resilience of key enabling communications technologies and critical infrastructure highlights the need to rely on trusted suppliers, to prevent vulnerabilities and dependencies, with potential downstream effects on the entire industrial ecosystem.

We delivered a 6G outlook in May 2023. In addition, the two main industry associations on each side of the Atlantic jointly developed a 6G Industry Roadmap in December 2023. The roadmap affirmed the commitment of the stakeholders to collaborate on the development of 6G networks and proposed a comprehensive set of critical strategic reflections and recommendations from academia and industry. On 26 February 2024, ten countries, including some EU Member States concluded a joint statement on 6G.

These milestones have contributed to shaping the joint “6G vision” that we are adopting today. This vision focuses on technology challenges and research collaboration including on microelectronics; AI and cloud solutions for 6G; security and resilience; affordability and inclusiveness, sustainability and energy efficiency; openness and interoperability; efficient radio spectrum usage; and the standardisation process.

Having decided on this 6G vision, the United States and the European Union will strengthen cooperation between their research and innovation funding agencies, notably through an Administrative Arrangement signed between the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Directorate‑General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (DG Connect) of the European Commission covering collaboration in the field of 6G and Next Generation Internet technologies.

Considering the importance of developing a common vision to 6G and cooperating in the global standardisation process through standardisation organisations such as ETSI/3GPP, we also intend to develop an outreach plan with likeminded partners to support and advance the development of 6G networks.


The coordination on our respective efforts to build resilient semiconductor supply chains remains crucial to the secure supply of semiconductors, which are indispensable inputs to an ever-growing range of key industry sectors, and to ensure leadership in cutting-edge technologies.

We have been cooperating fruitfully under two administrative arrangements:

  • A joint early warning mechanism aimed at identifying (potential) supply chain disruptions and enabling early action to address their impacts, which has already proven useful in monitoring developments in the gallium and germanium markets; and
  • A transparency mechanism for reciprocal sharing of information about public support provided to the semiconductor sector.

We intend to extend the two administrative arrangements for a period of three years to enable further coordination and to establish synergies between our support for investments in the semiconductor sector taking place under the EU Chips Act and the U.S. CHIPS Act.

The United States and the European Union share concerns about non-market economic policies and practices that may lead to distortionary effects or excessive dependencies for mature node (“legacy”) semiconductors. On the side of the fifth TTC ministerial meeting, which took place on 30 January 2024 in Washington, D.C., we held a joint roundtable with high-level industry representatives dedicated to legacy semiconductor supply chains. Both the United States and the European Union are committed to continuing to engage closely with industry on the issue. We plan to convene further government-to-government discussions with like-minded countries on this topic in the near future. In January 2024, the United States launched an industry survey to assess the use of legacy chips in supply chains that directly or indirectly support U.S. national security and critical infrastructure. The European Union is also gathering information on this issue. We intend to, as appropriate, continue to collect and share non-confidential information and market intelligence about non-market policies and practices, commit to consult each other on planned actions, and may develop joint or cooperative measures to address distortionary effects on the global supply chain for legacy semiconductors.

We plan to continue working to identify research cooperation opportunities on alternatives to the use of per- and polyfluorinated substances (PFAS) in chips. For example, we plan to explore the use of AI capacities and digital twins to accelerate the discovery of suitable materials to replace PFAS in semiconductor manufacturing.

Biotechnology Cooperation to Promote the Bioeconomy and Address Global Challenges

The bioeconomy is supported by the use of foundational and widely-applicable tools and technologies (including emerging biotechnologies), which have the potential to drive innovation to address global challenges. .These tools and technologies also represent an opportunity to begin developing a common international understanding of the bioeconomy and future efforts to evaluate, measure, and grow the global bioeconomy as a whole. A crucial component of this effort is establishing a shared understanding of some of the risks and vulnerabilities associated with the bioeconomy, including economic and security considerations, alongside a simultaneous commitment to enabling the safe, secure, sustainable, and responsible use of tools and technologies for bioeconomic development.

We look forward to cooperating on shared research, development, and innovation priorities through the U.S.-EU Joint Consultative Group that will push bioeconomic development forward in ways that address the most pressing global challenges we all face.

We acknowledge the significant promise and risks associated with the integration of advanced biotechnology with other technological disciplines such as AI, information technology, nanotechnology, neurotechnology, chemistry, and medicine, which will drive innovation and have significant implications for academia, industry, and economic security. To address the potential risks associated with the convergence of these technologies, we are committed to work toward mechanisms to safeguard dual-use advanced biotechnology items and equipment.

Transatlantic Cooperation on Standards for Critical and Emerging Technologies and Clean Energy Transition

The United States and the European Union share an interest in recognizing mutually compatible technical standards as a way to expand transatlantic approaches for the deployment of critical and emerging technologies that reflect our shared values.

We plan to continue to exchange information on international standardisation activities for critical and emerging technologies via the “Strategic Standardisation Information (SSI)” mechanism, as established at the second U.S-EU TTC ministerial meeting. Our deepened cooperation enables us to cooperate on global standards. In order to strengthen collaboration with the private sector, we organised a joint stakeholder workshop in Washington D.C. on 17 November 2023, which identified relevant areas for transatlantic collaboration.

Together with standards development organisations and stakeholders, we have endeavoured to work towards mutually compatible standards and best practices in areas of strategic interest with the objective of avoiding unnecessarily burdensome technical trade barriers, without prejudice to the specificities and needs of our respective legal systems.

Over the last two years, our cooperation has led to tangible outcomes. We have facilitated commonly recognised international standards for the rollout of megawatt charging systems for heavy-duty vehicle charging points, and joint work of U.S. and EU standardisation bodies on plastics recycling and additive manufacturing since the start of the TTC. Our work continues to facilitate the development of mutually recognised and compatible standards to enhance new opportunities for cooperation within our respective standardisation systems.  

Following a successful round of government-to-government technical exchanges, the European Commission and U.S. government released a Digital Identity Mapping Exercise ReportDigital Identity Mapping Exercise Report which provides the results of an initial mapping centred on the definitions, assurance levels, and references to international standards included across Revision 3 of the NIST Digital Identity Guidelines (Special Publication 800-63, Revision 3) and European Regulation (EU) No 910/2014 on electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market. The next phase of this project will focus on identifying potential use cases for transatlantic interoperability and cooperation with a view toward enabling the cross-border use of digital identities and wallets.

The United States and the European Union intend to continue to identify emerging technology standards that are enablers of the clean energy transition for transatlantic collaboration.

B. Promoting Sustainability and New Opportunities for Trade and Investment 

Transatlantic Initiative on Sustainable Trade 

The Transatlantic Initiative on Sustainable Trade (TIST) work programme, which we launched at the fourth U.S-EU TTC ministerial meeting in May 2023, has advanced our cooperation on actions to accelerate the transition to climate-neutral economies in the United States and the European Union in a mutually beneficial way. The United States and the European Union have been making progress on the different work strands under the TIST work programme and will continue to advance this work.

Building a Transatlantic Green Marketplace

Building on our strong economic links to accelerate the green transition while creating new business opportunities for our firms and good employment opportunities for our citizens is a key objective of the TIST.

On 30-31 January 2024, the United States and the European Union jointly organised the “Crafting the Transatlantic Green Marketplace” event in Washington, D.C. The event brought together representatives from the U.S. and EU business, civil society, and labor communities to engage in a series of thematic stakeholder-led discussions that focused on identifying opportunities for transatlantic collaboration to promote the transition to a more sustainable and climate-neutral economy on both sides of the Atlantic. The United States and the European Union thank the participants for their time and input. We are currently analysing the various proposals for cooperation received from the stakeholders to assess their potential to be taken forward.

In addition, the United States and the European Union will continue various efforts under the TIST umbrella, including exploring potential avenues of cooperation on conformity assessment.

Green Public Procurement

The United States and the European Union underscore that, by achieving a common understanding on green public procurement practices, we can accelerate the uptake of more sustainable and greener solutions to achieve our common environmental and climate goals.

To this end, we have issued a Joint U.S.-EU Catalogue of Best Practices on Green Public Procurement. It will contribute to advancing sustainability objectives by identifying and promoting policy tools for accelerating the deployment of publicly financed sustainability projects in the United States and the European Union.

The Joint Catalogue presents a collection of policies, practices, and actions used across all stages of the procurement process, from the strategic planning to pre-procurement, procurement, and post-contract award stage, and addresses all types of environmental and climate challenges, such as reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, energy efficiency or promoting circular economy approaches. It can serve as an inspiration for policymakers and suppliers, as well as provide ideas for the uptake of green solutions in public procurement globally.

The United States and the European Union will continue to work together on how to use the Joint Catalogue and maximise its impact.

Secure and Sustainable Supply Chains for the Clean Energy Transition

The United States and the European Union reaffirm that secure and sustainable transatlantic supply chains are key for a solid and steadfast transition towards a net zero economy and will help reduce excessive dependencies in strategic economic activities. We intend to continue to cooperate on strategic supply chains, such as solar, to help us increase secure supply of clean energy. The United States and the European Union share common challenges in the solar sector and reaffirm the importance of a dedicated workstream that explores ways to jointly support our photovoltaic manufacturing capacity (including equipment) and to diversify and de-risk this supply chain.

The United States and the European Union also continue efforts to promote transparency and traceability to improve social standards and environmental protections across supply chains that support the green transition. In this context, we are planning a workshop with stakeholders to present ongoing initiatives to promote innovative solutions in the management of sustainable supply chains, including a focused session on solar.

U.S-EU Clean Energy Incentives Dialogue

The United States and the European Union share a strong commitment to tackling the climate crisis. We want to further the growth of the global clean energy economy while establishing resilient, secure, and diverse clean energy supply chains. By strengthening and expanding clean energy industries and investing in future-oriented sectors, we generate jobs, ignite a positive cycle of innovation, and decrease costs for clean energy technologies.

Through the U.S-EU Clean Energy Incentives Dialogue, we continue to work in a transparent and mutually reinforcing manner, to avoid zero-sum competition, subsidy races and distortions in transatlantic trade and investment flows that could arise from our respective policies and incentives. In this way, we strive to maximise clean energy technology deployment that creates jobs and does not lead to windfalls for private interests. To further enhance transparency, we intend to share specific information about our respective public incentive programs starting with one sector as a pilot with the possibility to extend this to further sectors in the future and will explore putting in place a reciprocal mechanism for consultations.

We share concerns about a range of third country non-market policies and practices. We have discussed thoseused by certain third countries to attain a dominant global position in clean energy sectors, and recognise the value of continuing to exchange information on such non-market policies and practices. We will continue to explore policy tools and possible coordinated action to address harm caused by these policies and practices. including by fostering supply chain diversification, reducing dependencies, and building resilience to economic coercion.

Critical Minerals

The United States and the European Union affirm their close collaboration on diversifying global critical minerals supply chains. We welcome the launch of the Mineral Security Partnership (MSP) Forum, which we will co-chair. The MSP Forum will formalize and expand its existing engagements with minerals producing countries, with a particular focus on advancing and accelerating individual projects with high environmental protections and social governance and labor standards and promoting discussion of policies that contribute to diverse and resilient supply chains.

Continuing our well-established cooperation on critical raw materials, a workshop on “Developing the permanent magnets value chain” resulted in valuable exchanges focussing on rare earth magnets. We plan to continue these exchanges in the future.

To promote a green transition, enhance economic security, and strengthen environmental protections and labor rights in international critical minerals supply chains, the United States and the European Union are advancing negotiations toward a Critical Minerals Agreement.

Transatlantic E-Mobility Cooperation

We welcome the successful completion of the Electro-mobility and Interoperability with Smart Grids workstream with the publication of the U.S-EU joint technical recommendations for “Future Public Demonstrations of Vehicle-Grid Integration (VGI) Pilots”. Devised in consultation with industry experts and stakeholders, the recommendations propose the development of best practices to prepare for large-scale VGI demonstrations, educate potential customers, and incorporate requisite customer-related factors in demonstration programme designs, and aim at supporting communication and coordination between the United States and the EU.

The recommendations complement the “Transatlantic Technical Recommendations for Government Funded Implementation of Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure,” which were presented at the fourth TTC ministerial meeting in May 2023 in Luleå, Sweden.

Together, the two sets of recommendations can benefit companies and end users, and transatlantic trade and investment, by supporting the expansion of e-mobility as well as the realization of U.S. and EU clean energy and de-carbonization commitments.

Enhancing eInvoicing Interoperability between the United States and the European Union

As part of our efforts to increase the use of digital tools that enhance trade, Electronic Invoicing (eInvoicing) has emerged as a transformative tool in modern business, offering efficiency gains, cost savings, and trade benefits. The continued cooperation and efforts towards compatible eInvoicing between the United States and the European Union. offer a spectrum of advantages, with the potential to significantly reshape cross-market transactions and the dynamics of transatlantic trade. Even though most of the eInvoicing technical specifications and profiles are highly aligned, there are differences between our respective eInvoicing systems. We intend to continue to cooperate and coordinate for greater compatibility, particularly in terms of business and technical interoperability, as outlined in the declaration annexed to this Joint Statement.

Trade and Labor in the Green Transition

Today, the United States and the European Union held their third session of the tripartite Transatlantic Trade and Labor Dialogue (TALD). This session brought together TTC principals and senior representatives from labor, business, and government from both sides of the Atlantic and continued the joint transatlantic work with social partners on the promotion of sustainable and responsible supply chains with strong protections for labor rights. Building on the discussions during the workshop on the “Promotion of Good Quality Jobs for a Successful, Just and Inclusive Green Transition” on 30 January 2024, the TALD meeting provided the opportunity to dive deeper and hear views from labor and business stakeholders on the topic of the green transition, with specific focus on the green transition and other challenges, and the future of TALD.

In addition, the United States and the European Union reaffirmed their commitment to cooperate to eliminate forced labor from global supply chains, as called upon in the labor and businesses stakeholders’ May 2023 joint recommendations, and they expressed the intention to continue technical dialogue to exchange information, as well as share best practices regarding the implementation of their forced labor policies, including with regard to research and risk assessment.

C. Trade, Security, and Economic Prosperity

Trade for Economic Security

Strengthening our economic security is a fundamental pillar of the transatlantic partnership. The TTC has helped provide a better understanding of our respective approaches to economic security. We intend to continue cooperation under the TTC to address common challenges using relevant trade and technology tools, bilaterally and in relevant fora, including the G7 and the World Trade Organization. We reaffirm shared concerns about the challenges posed to our economic security by, among other issues, economic coercion, the weaponization of economic dependencies, and the use of non-market policies and practices by third countries. We share the objective of continuing efforts to de-risk and diversify our trade and investment relations, including by reducing critical and excessive dependencies and strengthening the resilience of strategic supply chains.

Cooperation on Export Controls and Sanction-Related Export Restrictions

We continue to recognise the important role played by the TTC in supporting the European Union, the United States, and other international partners in their unprecedented cooperation on measures against Russia and Belarus. Such cooperation has helped bring about a continuous alignment of our regulations and a consistent application of export restrictions targeting Russia and Belarus through, for example, regular exchanges of information about authorisation and denial decisions. It has also supported coordination to counter the circumvention of our measures, such as through the creation and update of a common list of high priority items (CHP) and our outreach to industry.

We will continue to work to further align U.S. and EU priorities on Russian export restrictions and coordinated international messaging on those priorities to combat circumvention and improve efficiency and effectiveness of domestic controls. As regards the implementation of export restrictions against Russia, both sides welcome the setting up of the platform for the exchange of licensing information and plan to continue to exchange information on outreach activities, including to third countries and industry.

Both sides have also decided to continue work on facilitating secure high-technology trade and reducing administrative burdens in areas covered by export controls by developing a common understanding of respective rules and mapping out measures that would help streamline this trade, while maintaining a well-functioning and effective export control regime. For example, the United States has expanded licencing exceptions to EU Member States.

We welcome the impulse the TTC has given to coordinated action by the United States and the European Union in reaching out to other countries and supporting them in strengthening their export controls, for example, through the provision of secure software for the processing of licenses.

Investment Screening

We reiterate the importance of having effective foreign direct investment (FDI) screening mechanisms in place aimed at addressing national security risks in the United States and addressing threats to security and public order in the European Union. We welcome the progress in this regard and will continue to support the development and implementation of these mechanisms, while promoting an open and attractive investment environment.

We have carried out joint work to identify certain best practices on foreign direct investment screening with the intention to eventually bring these to the attention of screening authorities and stakeholders more broadly. We will soon launch of a joint repository that will provide additional resources to U.S. and EU Member State investment screening professionals. We have deepened our cooperation on investment screening through hosting a public stakeholder event and conducting outreach to like-minded partners in the Western Balkans to support their development of effective FDI screening mechanisms and intend to continue such outreach in 2024.

We will continue our cooperation on investment screening through technical exchanges, including on investment trends impacting security risks related to specific sensitive technologies to provide a better understanding of similarities and differences in approach.

Outbound Investment Security

We recognize the importance of investment, innovation, and open economies. At the same time, we are also attentive to concerns regarding potential security threats and risks to international peace and security that may arise from certain outbound investments in a narrow set of critical technologies. Against this background, the United States and the European Union will continue to exchange information on the security risks, risk analyses, and on our respective approaches around this issue, and how to address this new challenge.

Addressing Non-Market Policies and Practices

The United States and the European Union remain concerned about the persistent use of other countries’ non-market policies and practices and the challenge they pose both to our workers and businesses and to other third-country markets. We continue to exchange on the risks that non-market policies and practices, including non-market excess capacity, pose in certain sectors and to engage with partners where appropriate.

We engaged with other countries who share our concerns about China’s non-market policies and practices in the medical devices sector, and conveyed these concerns directly to China. The United States and the European Union will continue to monitor developments in the medical devices sector.

D. Defending Human Rights and Values in a Changing Geopolitical Digital Environment

Protecting Information Integrity in a Pivotal Year for Democratic Resilience

The United States and the European Union reiterate our unwavering commitment to support democracies across the world. We are determined to defend human rights and will continue to call out authoritarianism. In a year marked by democratic elections around the world, we call upon all actors including governments, industry, journalists, human rights defenders, and civil society to protect and defend information integrity both online and offline.

We express our strong support for the role of free, pluralistic, and independent media in protecting information integrity. Independent media should serve as a public watchdog and a key pillar of democracy, as well as an important and dynamic part of our economy. We recognize its indispensable role informing public opinion, fact-checking, and holding those in power accountable.

We are witnessing rapid technological advancements which provide opportunities to enhance information integrity but also create new risks. The United States and the European Union share the concern that malign use of AI applications, such as the creation of harmful “deepfakes,” poses new risks, including to further the spread and targeting of foreign information manipulation and interference (FIMI). We call upon technology companies and online platforms to uphold information integrity, including in the run-up to elections across the world.

In the European Union, the Digital Services Act (DSA) requires designated very large online platforms and search engines to assess and mitigate societal risks emanating from their services, including negative effects on civic discourse and electoral processes and recommends specific measures, including on generative AI content.

 Cooperation on Online Platforms

The United States and the European Union reaffirm their view that online platforms should exercise greater responsibility in ensuring that their services contribute to an online environment that protects, empowers, and respects their users. We reiterate that online platforms should take appropriate actions to address the impact of their services on the mental health and development of children and youth.

The United States and the European Union also reaffirm that urgent action is needed to address technology-facilitated gender-based violence, which disproportionately impacts women and girls, who often experience multiple and intersecting discriminations and oppressions. We developed a set of joint principles on combatting gender-based violence on online platforms that complement further the joint high-level principles on the protection and empowerment of children and youth and facilitation of data access from online platforms for independent research, which were released at the fourth TTC ministerial meeting. 

In addition to releasing these principles, we are also publishing a status report on mechanisms for researcher access to online platform data, which builds upon efforts undertaken by the academic and research community. The aim of this work is to disseminate information about the new and improved possibilities now available to study and understand systemic risks related to online platforms. We call on online platforms to expand and improve access for researchers, particularly on societal risks.

To deepen this work, in the margins of this Ministerial Meeting, we organized a joint workshop on access to platform data and using this data to combat technology-facilitated gender-based violence. We invited, and continue to encourage, the research community to analyse these data access mechanisms, and to explore how they can contribute to a better understanding of the functioning of – and the potential risks emanating from online platforms with regard to areas such as the mental health and development of children and youth, and technology-facilitated gender-based violence.

We share the commitment to the highest appropriate standards of protection in these areas for users in both the United States and the European Union.

Protecting Human Rights Defenders Online

The United States and the European Union recognise the key role human rights defenders (HRDs) play in defending human rights and fundamental freedoms, and we are committed to the protection of HRDs online and offline. We are working together to address human rights risks stemming from the misuse of digital technologies, including combatting internet shutdowns, unlawful surveillance, and the targeting of HRDs online. Elevating the critical role of HRDs and supporting and protecting them in doing their work safely is not only a shared foreign policy priority for the United States and the European Union, but an imperative for advancing human rights for all.

Following the commitment made at the fourth TTC ministerial meeting, we have published joint Recommended Actions for Online Platforms on Protecting Human Rights Defenders Online. This document sets out ten recommendations that online platforms can take globally to prevent, mitigate, and provide remedy for attacks against HRDs online.

These recommendations reflect commitments we made with global partners through the Declaration of the Future of the Internet and reflect key principles of U.S. and EU legislation, initiatives, and policies to safeguard human rights online. They were informed by extensive stakeholder consultations organized by the United States and the European Union from January 2023 to February 2024. The United States and the European Union intend to take further actions to address the needs of HRDs around the world. We will engage with all relevant stakeholders to promote the recommended actions and facilitate their implementation. We will also facilitate further exchanges and cooperation between the European Union- and United States-based emergency mechanisms on support strategies which seek to prevent, curb, mitigate, and eliminate online attacks, including the use of arbitrary and unlawful surveillance targeting HRDs.

Foreign Information Manipulation and Interference in Third Countries

The United States and the European Union consider foreign information manipulation and interference (FIMI) to be geopolitical and security challenges. We share the aim of addressing this threat and enhancing the resilience of democracies. Against this background, we have taken a number of actions to increase transatlantic cooperation to proactively address FIMI, including disinformation, while upholding human rights and fundamental freedoms. We will continue to work together to address FIMI through the TTC and other multi- and bilateral contexts.

We will continue to jointly use and further advance the common analytical methodology to identify, analyse and detect FIMI decided at the fourth TTC ministerial meeting. We are engaging with other international partners on a quarterly basis to familiarise them with this methodology. Expanding the network of partners familiar with this methodology will enhance our common understanding of the threat and allow us to jointly identify, analyse, and counter FIMI globally.

The European Union, the United States, and the Western Balkan partners share the same vision for an open, reliable, and secure Internet, as evidenced by their joint endorsement of the Declaration for the Future of the Internet. We will coordinate our efforts in order to support the Western Balkan partners by launching a coordination mechanism to address FIMI threats more effectively in the region. This is in line with the European Union’s and like-minded partners’ initiatives to increase their capabilities to further identify, assess, and counter FIMI. Our support will reduce third countries’, and in particular Russia’s and other actors’, including China’s, ability to effectively employ FIMI campaigns in the region. We will help our partners in the Western Balkans to develop capacity in five key action areas: the development of national strategies and policies, the creation of dedicated governance structures and institutions, increasing human and technical capabilities, protecting and supporting the role of independent media, academia, and civil society, and multilateral engagement.

Secure and Trusted Digital Infrastructure and Connectivity in Third Countries

The United States and the European Union reiterate the importance of and support for secure, trusted, and resilient digital connectivity and information and communication technology and services (ICTS) supply chains in third countries, provided by trusted suppliers.

We commend the decisions taken by partner countries towards trusted ICT ecosystems by ensuring high cybersecurity and resilience standards for connectivity solutions and networks, including by restricting or excluding high-risk suppliers from their national networks and using trusted vendors and services providers for maintenance and repair.

We will continue to reach out to partners across the world to understand the needs and challenges around securing digital infrastructure and explore how we can best collaborate to support the digitalisation goals of emerging economies. We continue to engage emerging economies through technical discussions and high-level roundtables to increase interest in secure digital connectivity. We also remain committed to continued exchanges with relevant industry actors such as mobile network operators and trusted equipment suppliers.

We are delivering on our commitments to support to secure and resilient connectivity projects in Costa Rica, Jamaica, Kenya, and the Philippines, including through mechanisms like the Global Gateway, the Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment, and technical exchanges, including third counties sharing experiences to accelerate secure connectivity in other parts of the region.

The United States and the European Union are supporting Tunisia’s goal of establishing secure digital connectivity and infrastructure by relying on trusted vendors through collaborative advocacy, technical assistance and by exploring financing, coordination, and policy alignment. This includes providing training programs to targeted Tunisian government agencies, IT professionals, and businesses, and promoting the development of cybersecurity standards and frameworks, in particular for 5G. The United States and the European Union are advancing discussions with relevant financial institutions for the mobilisation of support for secure digital connectivity infrastructure projects with trusted vendors.

We aim to continue our actions to support secure and resilient digital connectivity in third countries. Following the earlier signing of a memorandum of understanding between the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), the United States and the European Union intend to augment their actions by furthering cooperation between the EU Member State and United States financing agencies. In 2023, the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) signed co-financing memorandums of understanding with the Swedish EKN and Finnish Finnvera respectively to facilitate joint support for export projects, and has enabled direct support to trusted suppliers from both sides.

We are committed to exploring options to act strategically, cooperatively, and efficiently to provide attractive incentives to partner countries to choose trusted suppliers for the development of their connectivity networks.

Secure and Resilient International Connectivity

The United States and the European Union recall the economic and geostrategic importance of cooperating on trust and security in the entirety of ICT infrastructure, including maintenance and repair. To this end, we continue to seek ways to advance cooperation on international connectivity with trustworthy, secure, and resilient networks. This could include trans-oceanic routes including through the Arctic and Pacific regions.

III. Building the Transatlantic Partnership Together with Stakeholders

We remain committed to high levels of transparency and the close involvement of the transatlantic stakeholder community at large in the work of the TTC, including businesses, labor organisations, non-profit organisations, environmental constituencies, and academics.

We have therefore extensively reached out to stakeholders and given them the possibility to be involved and to provide input and receive feedback through the organisation of events, roundtables, and workshops and the establishment of dedicated websites like Futurium. With the support of the EU-financed Trade and Technology Dialogue, several high-level events have taken place and stakeholders have been consulted on topics such as sustainable trade, standardisation, AI, connectivity, and semiconductors.

In addition to these activities, we have also engaged with relevant stakeholders in more structured formats such as the Transatlantic Trade and Labor Dialogue, the Talent for Growth Task Force, and with small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in a series of webinars on the topic of SME access to and use of digital tools.

Talent for Growth

The Talent for Growth Task Force, launched in April 2023 with a one-year mandate, has served both as a platform for best practices and a catalyst for innovative skills approaches that promote economic growth and create opportunities for workers in the technology sector. The Task Force brought together leaders from government, business, labor unions, and organisations that support training from the United States and the European Union. The Task Force identified, mapped, and disseminated implementable models and ideas in four critical areas: training workers to meet business needs, including women and underrepresented groups in technical jobs, Moving to a skills-first culture, and micro-credentials. The Task Force endorsed a statement featuring key messages stemming from these discussions.

The discussions in this group have confirmed the critical role talent plays for the sustainable growth of our economies and the well-being of our societies in an age of rapidly changing technology. It examined the acceleration of change brought about by AI. The Task Force has established bilateral relations between Task Force members which have catalysed private-sector initiatives and will last beyond the timeframe of the Task Force. The European and the United States remain dedicated to continuing to equip our workforces with the skills necessary to meet the needs created by rapidly changing technology, including AI.

Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs)

The United States and the European Union recognise the use of digital tools as a key enabler for SMEs to innovate, grow, and compete and are continuing their work to promote the uptake of digital technologies by SMEs.

Several webinars and outreach activities where SMEs shared their needs and experience were held during the last two years. After an analysis of these stakeholder exchanges, we have developed a common set of recommendations for U.S. and EU policymakers to implement measures to help SMEs to accelerate access to these technologies.

The recommendations focus on the topics of digital-related trainings; transatlantic exchange programmes; information-sharing on cyber-security, intellectual property, and standards; and access to finance. To continue the work, we intend to develop an implementation process for these recommendations, including measures such as a webinar on access to finance and the publishing of cross-referenced U.S. and EU websites with practical information for SMEs.

IV. Conclusion and Next Steps

Since its inaugural meeting on 29 September 2021, the TTC has realized substantial progress and achievements across all workstreams. These results have enabled the United States and the European Union: to explore how to create new trade and investment opportunities, notably to contribute to the green transition; to advance our shared leadership in emerging technologies, such as 6G, quantum, and biotechnology so that democracies can remain at the vanguard of these developments; to provide a robust joint response to Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine; to cooperate on economic security measures to reduce economic dependencies; to continue to develop a shared understanding of the non-market policies and practices and the risks they pose or our workers, businesses and markets globally; to jointly enhance supply chain resilience while promoting transparency and cooperation on our industrial policy approaches in key sectors, including semiconductors and clean energy; to exchange information on best practices in eliminating forced labor from our global supply chains; to advance and reinforce interoperability between AI governance frameworks based on our shared democratic values to achieve our common vision for safe, secure, and trustworthy AI globally ; to advance the resilience and security of our ICT infrastructures; and to finance and promote secure connectivity with trusted suppliers around the world.

These achievements demonstrate the enduring ties between the United States and the European Union and the importance of maintaining an operational forum for cooperation on strategic trade and technology issues of common interest and geopolitical relevance. As the United States and the European Union enter their respective electoral processes, the work we do under the TTC will remain relevant, strategic, and timely, while allowing for the necessary flexibility to adapt to changing circumstances.

Building on the lessons learned from our cooperation so far, we intend to use the remainder of 2024 to engage with U.S. and EU stakeholders to learn their views on the future of the TTC.

Read the position paper published by AmChamEU – The future of the Trade and Technology Council: