Trade & Investment Resources

Trade & Investment Resources

The European Union is the world’s biggest trader, accounting for 20 percent of global imports and exports. Free trade among its members was one of the founding principles of the EU, and it is committed to liberalizing world trade for the benefit of rich and poor countries alike. Trade policy is the exclusive jurisdiction of the European Union, which represents the interests of all 28 EU Member States at bilateral and multilateral levels, including the World Trade Organization.

Perhaps the most defining feature of the global economy, the EU-US economic relationship accounts for more than 30 percent of global trade in goods and 40 percent of global trade in services. We are each other’s main trading partners and goods and services, and together we have the largest bilateral trade relationship in the world. In 2010, bilateral trade in goods alone was worth $546 billion.

Our two economies also provide each other with our most important sources of foreign direct investment. Close to a quarter of all EU-US trade consists of transactions within firms based on their investments on either side of the Atlantic. In fact, U.S. investment in Europe is more than three times more than in all of Asia combined. The overall transatlantic workforce is estimated at 15 million workers—about half in the US and half in the EU—who owe their jobs directly or indirectly to companies from the other side of the Atlantic.