U.S. And Europe Create New Trade And Technology Council

The United States and Europe have announced a new joint trade and technology council aimed at countering China’s rising influence.

The new "U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council" will have three overarching goals: Establish new global trade standards for emerging technologies, promote democratic values online; and find ways for the U.S. and Europe to collaborate on cutting edge research and development.

The end result will be that "democracies and not anyone else, not China or other autocracies, are writing the rules for trade and technology for the 21st century," according to a news release.

On the U.S. side, the trade council will be co-chaired by Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo and Ambassador Katherine Tai, the U.S. trade representative to the European Union (EU).

Other goals of the council include:

Coordinate standards on new technologies such as artificial intelligence, quantum computing and biotechnology.

Make supply chains more resilient and less dependent on China.

Pursue reforms at the World Trade Organization.

Coordinate regulations of technology platforms.

The new Trade and Technology Council is the latest effort by the Biden administration to leverage the combined economic might of the U.S. and Europe to better compete with China.

Over the past decade, China has made huge public investments in its technology sector. The result is a digital economy and an internet that is controlled by the state and reflects its political values: Individual censorship is widespread, foreign websites are blocked if they refuse to censor sensitive topics, and private sector software can be seized to serve the interests of the government.

China is equally aggressive in protecting its domestic markets, notably by requiring foreign companies that want to operate in China to partner with local Chinese companies and turn over intellectual property.

On June 12, Biden and G7 members announced the formation of a global infrastructure initiative called "Build Back Better for the World." The multi-billion-dollar plan will offer an alternative to China’s "Belt and Road" infrastructure project.