In February 2013, US President Barrack Obama, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy and President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso announced the decision to go for an ambitious and comprehensive trade and investment agreement between the US and the EU. To be called the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), this agreement would lead to a new stage in the transatlantic relationship and be a much needed boost to the lacklustre economic recovery so far. Some analysts have even argued that TTIP would be a “game changer” – besides the economic gains, it would serve a bigger strategic purpose of promoting EU-US common objective to set higher standards of trade liberalisation, and thereby level the playing field in China and other key emerging markets.
This policy brief examines the reasons behind the current push towards TTIP and the possible contents of such an agreement. It also discusses the possible obstacles to the realisation of TTIP, and at the same time, looks into what a successful conclusion of TTIP would mean for Asia and beyond.