Stephen Harper arrived Wednesday in Brussels for the G7 summit — but his first order of business was to kick-start his stalled free-trade deal with the European Union.
The prime minister met with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, about an hour prior to the official opening of the G7 summit, where the Ukraine-Russia crisis was set to dominate.
But Harper appeared eager to make progress towards getting a final text of the Comprehensive Trade and Investment Agreement, or CETA.
Last week's summit of EU leaders in Brussels brought the "right answers" to the problems facing the eurozone, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble has told a German newspaper.In an interview to be published on Sunday in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung, Schaeuble said: "The Brussels summit brought the right answers to the problems facing" eurozone members.EU leaders had established "a clear plan for growth" in 2013, he said.
By Ralph Shell: You would think after 20 or so major and mini summits over the period since the Greek saga commenced, the European leaders would have enough experience to have successful productive summits. We are headed for another important gathering in Brussels on Thursday and Friday, and unlike the pre summit optimism at the early meetings, there is now apprehension this meeting will fail to provide an answer.
Guest blog post by Michael C. Camuñez, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Market Access and Compliance, International Trade Administration This past week, I traveled to Europe as part of my ongoing efforts to deepen the already-robust trans-Atlantic trade relationship. One of my stops was in Brussels, Belgium, the home of the European Commission and heart of the European Union. There, I sat down with EU leaders to discuss ways in which the U.S. and Europe can work together to foster greater economic opportunity and growth on both sides of the Atlantic. I was honored to join a lunch with the president of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy, Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti, and other EU leaders, where I offered them my perspective on the importance of the protection of intellectual property rights to our shared prosperity.I also participated in a panel discussion on intellectual property rights (IPR) and growth at the 10th Annual European Business Summit, an issue vital to fostering innovation. My participation in the Business Summit was timely. For the past several weeks, IPR policies have been hotly debated across the European Union. The question at the forefront of this debate is: how does one protect and enforce IPR, while at the same time creating an environment that will foster the continued growth of the digital economy?My remarks offered me an opportunity to talk about the perspective that I bring as Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Market Access and Compliance. My role has given me some insight into the global competition to transform industrial, carbon-based economies into 21st-century knowledge-based economies–to attract and keep talent, to intensify the pace of innovation and commercialization of innovative products and services, and how to gain and keep our competitive edge.
[10:40 am ET] A week ago I wrote that the capital market – stocks, bonds, currencies, commodities – is struggling because of a liquidity problem due to counterparty risk. I opined that the world’s owners and managers of capital and of business simply don’t know who to trust. On Friday morning the leaders of the Eurozone said they could be trusted to bail out the banks of Spain and Italy. Obviously the markets liked that.
Germany, France, Italy, and Spain have agreed to spend 1% of GDP on new stimulus measures.
Where is the money coming from? They will not say. Most likely from somewhere else, better known as nowhere.
The Guardian reports Eurozone big four pledge 1% of GDP to underwrite banks and stimulate growth.