EU-US Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership: regulatory cooperation will provide the biggest benefit to the pulp & paper industry
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) and the Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI) and their members are strong proponents of free but fair trade. They support the objectives of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations aimed at eliminating barriers to trade, including regulatory barriers. The further reduction or elimination of trade barriers will strengthen the economies of the U.S. and the EU and enhance their global competitiveness.
The combined EU and U.S. pulp and paper industry accounts for more than 40% of the worldwide production and some companies have operations on both sides of the Atlantic. U.S.-EU trade in pulp and paper is very robust and both areas are among each other largest foreign markets. In 2012, U.S.-EU trade of pulp and paper & paperboard totalled $6.4 billion / €5.0 billion1.
The U.S. and the EU eliminated tariffs on all pulp and paper (Chapter 47 and Chapter 48 of the Harmonized System, respectively) as part of their implementation of the 1994 Uruguay Round Agreement of multilateral trade negotiations. Enhanced regulatory cooperation, particularly in the area of timber legality, renewable energy and biomass, environment, health & safety, and recovered paper definitions is a new step that will provide a real benefit to the pulp and paper industry.
Closer regulatory cooperation between the U.S. and the EU has the potential to generate significant cost savings and efficiencies. As suggested by the Final Report of the U.S.-EU High Level Working Group on Jobs and Growth, the elimination, reduction and prevention of unnecessary regulatory barriers are expected to provide the biggest benefit of the TTIP. While the U.S. and the EU regulatory systems differ, they share regulatory objectives because citizens on both sides of the Atlantic demand high level of protection.
TTIP should create a basis for genuine international leadership as well as providing new momentum to improve environmental, health and safety standards around the world.
“The U.S. and European pulp and paper industries are interested in achieving a more open and efficient regulatory environment, such as greater access and transparency of each other’s regulatory processes and mutual recognition that avoids duplicative compliance efforts,” said AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman.
In this regard, there are a number of areas where a sectoral approach on greater regulatory cooperation could reduce costs and administrative burdens in both the U.S. and the EU. As CEPI Director General Teresa Presas stated: “The pulp and paper sector, as represented by AF&PA and CEPI, is well positioned to reach more detailed regulatory cooperation within the overall TTIP negotiations, both on existing regulations as well as regulation on new and emerging products”.
The paper industry in the EU and the U.S. will work to reach agreement on specific proposals through a constructive sectoral dialogue. In addition, CEPI and the AF&PA believes that, beyond the agreement, the TTIP should remain a dynamic, ‘living’ agreement with sufficient flexibility to incorporate new areas and issues over time.
For more information, please contact:
CEPI aisbl – The Confederation of European Paper Industries
The Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI) is a Brussels-based non-profit making organisation regrouping the European pulp and paper industry and championing this industry’s achievements and the benefits of its products.
Its collective expertise provides a unique source of information both for and on the industry; coordinating essential exchanges of experience and knowledge among its members, and with the industry stakeholders. Through its 18 member countries (17 European Union members plus Norway) CEPI represents some 550 pulp, paper and board producing companies across Europe, ranging from small and medium sized companies to multi-nationals, and 1000 paper mills. Together they represent 24% of world production.
American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA)
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) serves to advance a sustainable U.S. pulp, paper, packaging, and wood products manufacturing industry through fact-based public policy and marketplace advocacy. AF&PA member companies make products essential for everyday life from renewable and recyclable resources and are committed to continuous improvement through the industry’s sustainability initiative – Better Practices, Better Planet 2020. The forest products industry accounts for approximately 4.5 percent of the total U.S. manufacturing GDP, manufactures approximately $200 billion in products annually, and employs nearly 900,000 men and women. The industry meets a payroll of approximately $50 billion annually and is among the top 10 manufacturing sector employers in 47 states.
Visit AF&PA online at afandpa.org or follow us on Twitter @ForestandPaper.
1 Pulp: $1.95 billion / €1.52 billion and paper & paperboard $4.44 billion / €3.5 billion.