January-June 2006

The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) signs a preliminary deal to merge with the pan-European Euronext exchange
June 29, 2006
The NYSE signed a $10 bn groundbreaking proposal to merge with European exchange market Euronext. A definitive deal between NYSE and Euronext, if approved, would create the first transatlantic stock market. Under the agreement, each NYSE share would convert into one share of common stock in the merged company, to be renamed NYSE Euronext. The EU is eventually expected to rule on the merger. The agreement would set up the world's largest and most liquid securities marketplace with a combined market capitalisation of around $20 billion.
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Background on a transatlantic securities market

EU – US Summit , Vienna , 21 June 2006

Commission President José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Council and Austrian Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel and US President George W. Bush will meet at the EU-US Summit on 21 June in Vienna to discuss foreign policy co-operation, energy security, economy and trade, and other global challenges. On energy, leaders are expected to step up EU-US cooperation to a strategic level and to promote a set of principles for responsible energy policies worldwide. Iran , the Middle East and the promotion of democracy are expected to dominate the foreign policy agenda. Other participants at the summit will be Commissioner Ferrero-Waldner, Commissioner for Trade Mandelson, and Austrian Foreign Minister Plassnik as well as High Representative Javier Solana from the EU side and Secretary of State Rice from the US side.
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The Race for Iran

June 20, 2006

AS the world watches the political maneuvering over restarting nuclear talks with Iran — this time with American participation — few are paying attention to a broader strategic competition that has started between the United States, Russia and China. Ultimately, this competition will decide not only the direction of Iran's nuclear activities but also its economic, political and military role in the Middle East and beyond. The outcome hinges on which countries will assume dominance in developing Iran's enormous oil and natural gas reserves.
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Religion is the wild card in transatlantic relations

June 16, 2006 
EUOBSERVER / COMMENT - Anyone involved in politics has to make difficult ethical decisions. In Europe as in the United States, religious convictions nowadays play a key role because the interplay between religion and politics has become increasingly central to the transatlantic dialogue. The religious landscape is changing in both the US and Europe. Religious issues are of ever greater relevance to foreign policy, and the relations of all European countries, with the US and especially those of Germany are taking on a quasi-domestic character because US policy trends are having a direct impact on Europe‘s domestic policies. This applies to religious as well as to other issues.
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OECD issues 2006 Economic Outlook
June 2006
The OECD publication provides invaluable insight into the economic trends and features of most advanced countries. "Together with a wide range of cross-country statistics, the Outlook provides a unique tool to keep abreast of world economic developments.In addition to the themes featured regularly, this issue contains a special chapter on Future Budget Pressures Arising from Spending on Health and Long-Term Care, which addresses the following questions: How much will ageing boost public health and long-term care expenditures over the next 50 years?What other factors influence spending and how are they likely to evolve?
Which role could policies play in containing future spending pressures?" 
Read the full report

EU urges an energy pact with Russians
By Judy Dempsey International Herald Tribune
March 9
BERLIN. Russia took center stage in European energy discussions Wednesday as the European Union urged its 25 members to form an energy pact with Moscow, while Poland, once again the renegade, presented an energy security plan that would exclude Russia, one of the Continent's main suppliers.
Speaking in Brussels, José Manuel Barroso, president of the European Commission, said he would hold talks with President Vladimir Putin of Russia later this month on intensifying the EU's energy relationship with Moscow.
"We need a new partnership with Russia," Barroso said. "We are interdependent. If we need a flow of energy from Russia, namely gas, I believe that it is also in the interest of Russia to have a stable market and a stable relationship with such an important customer as the European Union."
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US, EU join forces to fight fake goods trade
June 19, 2006
WASHINGTON - The United States and European Union are launching a joint campaign to fight the huge global trade in fake and pirated goods, beginning in Russia and China, EU officials said on Monday.
"Stepping up the enforcement fight required a joint strategy and it needed to have some teeth," EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson said in a statement.
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TACD Recommendations to 2006 EU-US Summit
TACD submitted its recommendations to the European Commission and U.S. Government to be considered in planning for the 2006 U.S.-EU Summit, which will take place in Vienna in June 2006.
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Hurdle for U.S. In Getting Data on Passengers

Nicola Clark and Matthew L. Wald

May 30, 2006 
PARIS, (NYT) — The European Union's highest court ruled Tuesday that the Union had overstepped its authority by agreeing to give the United States personal details about airline passengers on flights to America in an effort to fight terrorism. The decision will force the two sides to renegotiate the deal at a time of heightened concerns about possible infringements of civil liberties by the Bush administration in its campaign against terrorism, and the extent to which European governments have cooperated. The ruling gave both sides four months to approve a new agreement, and American officials expressed optimism that one could be reached. But without an agreement, the United States could take punitive action, in theory even denying landing rights to airlines that withhold the information. That could cause major disruptions in trans-Atlantic air travel, which accounts for nearly half of all foreign air travel to the United States. The European Court of Justice, based in Luxembourg, found that the European Commission and the European Council lacked the authority to make the deal, which was reached in May 2004. Specifically, the court said passenger records were collected by airlines for their own commercial use, so the European Union could not legally agree to provide them to the American authorities, even for the purposes of public security or law enforcement.
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NYSE Bids for Euronext to Create Transatlantic Market

May 22 2006 
May 22 (Bloomberg) -- NYSE Group Inc. made a cash and stock offer of about 8 billion 
euros ($10.2 billion) for Euronext NV, Europe's second-largest stock exchange, to create 
the first transatlantic securities market.  
Euronext investors would receive stock in the new company and 21.32 euros ($27.12) in 
cash for each share, the owner of the New York Stock Exchange said in a statement 
today. The bid amounts to about 71 euros for each Euronext share, or 4.8 percent less 
than closing price on the Paris stock exchange on May 19.  
NYSE Group Chief Executive Officer John Thain wants to unite the 214-year-old New 
York Stock Exchange with bourses in Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels and Lisbon, creating a 
single market bridging two continents. To succeed, he'll have to beat Deutsche Boerse 
AG, which made a competing offer last week. The board of Euronext will examine the 
proposals today, and shareholders will consider the bids at the company's annual meeting 
tomorrow.
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The Real Business of NATO

By Risto E.J. Penttila 
International Herald Tribune 
May 16 2006 

(...) NATO has already become a global policeman. The question now is whether it will 
turn out to be a good cop or a bad cop.  
If NATO wants to be a good cop, it must work out principles and decision- making 
procedures for the most likely crises of the future - even if those crises are a far cry from 
the war games played during the Cold War.  
If NATO continues to deny that it has become a global policeman, it will act without 
legitimacy and without a moral compass. In other words, it will be a bad cop. 
(...) NATO claims to defend freedom, democracy and liberty. Well, freedom, democracy 
and liberty are at stake when people are being slaughtered in Darfur. The same principles 
are also at stake when war-torn countries are trying to rebuild themselves.
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How to go Global

Economist.com

March 23, 2006 
A quiet revolution is occuring in what America expects of its friends. GEORGE BUSH may be consumed at home defending his policies in Iraq against the 60% of Americans who now disagree with his handling of the war. But Europeans hoping that the hard lessons being learned daily in Baghdad and Ramadi would force the administration to adopt a more collegial foreign policy are at last starting to see results. Why, then, are some of them fretting that the transatlantic alliance is about to drift farther apart?
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The Economics of Outsourcing:How should policy respond?
FPIF Report
March 2,2006
Outsourcing is a central element of economic globalization, representing a new form of competition. Responding to outsourcing calls for policies that enhance national competitiveness and establish rules ensuring acceptable forms of competition. Viewing outsourcing through the lens of competition connects with early 20th century American institutional economics. The policy challenge is to construct institutions that ensure stable, robust flows of demand and income, thereby addressing the Keynesian problem while preserving incentives for economic action.[...] Global outsourcing poses the challenge anew and calls for creative institutional arrangements to shape the nature of competition.
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G-6 states dig in on new trade deal
Richard Waddingtonand William Schomberg
LONDON - Six of the world's leading trading powers dug in on their positions at the weekend in removing long-standing hurdles to a global trade deal, but reaffirmed a commitment to conclude a key part of the pact by the end of next month.Brazilian Foreign Minister Celso Amorim said negotiators had to achieve a breakthrough in World Trade Organisation (WTO) talks, hosted by European Union (EU) trade chief Peter Mandelson, but were still not there after two days of talks...
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OECD Observer
Trade Interdependency
One characteristic of globalisation is the growing interdependency of countries and regions in all areas of international transactions. Take imports. According to the latest OECD Economic Globalisation Indicators, between 1995 and 2003 the share of demand met by imports in the OECD area increased from 34% to 41% for goods, and from 35% to 48% for services. Imports to the EU from other OECD countries remained very high, albeit easing slightly to 71% between 1995 and 2003.
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Annual EU Report on US Trade Barriers highlights behind-the-border and WTO issues; progress on Byrd Amendment, telecoms procurement
March 1st
The European Commission today released its twenty-first annual report on barriers to trade and investment in the US, detailing the obstacles that EU exporters and investors face in the US market. The report highlights non-tariff barriers in investment and public procurement and addresses some long running WTO problems such as issues concerning the US Jobs Act (FSC) and the repeal of the Byrd Amendment. The report comes out on the day the EU and US are lifting telecoms procurement sanctions against each other, bringing to an end a more than a decade-long dispute. The Transatlantic Economic Initiative is also offering new possibilities to advance trade, and tackle the regulatory and non-tariff barriers identified in this report...
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EU and US start regulatory co-operation
February 14
About 150 senior EU and US regulators, EU member states representatives, European Parliament and US Congress officials attended the first high-level meeting of the EU-US Regulatory Cooperation Forum on 26 January in Brussels. Numerous non-governmental interested parties also attended the meeting, including the Trans-Atlantic Business and Consumer Dialogues (TABD and TACD).
The forum meeting offered an insight into "how we regulate" on both sides of the Atlantic and to review recent developments in EU and US regulatory environments. It also allowed stakeholders and regulators to identify priorities in reducing regulatory differences and thereby advancing transatlantic economic integration...
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EU-US Forum "A Transatlantic Market by 2015"
CEPS
February 2, 2006
On Monday, the 2nd of February CEPS hosted a EU-US forum organised in co-operation with the Transatlantic Policy Network (TPN). The list of distinguished speakers included Erika Mann, MEP, James Elles, MEP, Alexander Schaub, Director General of DG Internal Market of the European Commission and Jim Cloos, Director of the Directorate Transatlantic Relations of the Council of the European Union...
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Aznar defends free economic circulation between US and UE
Spain Herald
Feb 8, 2006
Former PP prime minister Jose Maria Aznar yesterday presented a report written by his foundation, FAES, titled "The Atlantic area of prosperity," at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. Aznar supported the necessity for an alliance between the US and the EU which would permit the free circulation of goods, services, and capital...
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