Trade and Technology Council: renewed recommendations from 70+ European and U.S. consumer and digital groups

Valdis Dombrovskis, Margrethe Vestager, Anthony Blinken, Gina Raimondo, Katherine Tai in Paris Saclay for the TTC meeting in May 2022

Ahead of the 5 December meeting of the U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC) in Washington, D.C., the Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue shares its assessment of the process thus far and issues a renewed set of recommendations related to the main outcomes that will be announced during the meeting. Our goal is to prioritize the consumer and citizen interest in these discussions.

Portrait of Monique Goyens“EU-U.S. cooperation and sharing of best practices can be beneficial for consumers. But at the same time as the EU is regulating AI, it now wants to define key AI concepts with the U.S. such as what is a bias. This means these transatlantic discussions could influence how the EU legislates. We do not need yet another closed-door working group to oversee this but an open and multi-stakeholder discussion.” – Monique Goyens, Director General of BEUC – The European Consumer Organisation, and European co-chair of the Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue

“We’re now in the second year of the EU-U.S. collaboration. Few concrete outcomes have emerged so far, including a clear and intentional stakeholder engagement process. Outreach towards U.S. civil society has been ad hoc and short notice at best. No comment periods have been set for agendas, proposals, or outcomes in general. Opportunities to offer insight for Ministerial meetings have been announced with no more than 18 hours to prepare. U.S. groups often only learn basic information such as the time and place of meetings through outreach from Brussels. The process is opaque and disjointed and relies predominantly on civil society to inject itself into the working groups.” – Edmund Mierzwinski, Senior Director, Federal Consumer Programs at U.S. PIRG, and U.S. co-chair of the Transatlantic Consumer Dialogue

Our updated recommendations focus on:

  • Transparency and engagement
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • The Transatlantic Sustainable Trade Initiative
  • Vaccines

TACD’s renewed recommendations for the TTC to better support consumer and citizen goals.

More resources from TACD on the EU-U.S. cooperation:

  • EU-U.S. Consumer Dialogue can ensure better consumer protection in both markets (March 2022)
  • Lack of transparency could thwart the strong consumer safeguards that must be the goal of EU-U.S. cooperation dialogues (September 2021)
  • TACD’s Recommendations for the EU-U.S. cooperation agenda (December 2021)
  • TACD’s Checklist for the EU-U.S. cooperation (June 2021)