Business

US official lobbies for trans-Atlantic trade pact

Russia’s state-controlled natural gas giant, Gazprom, is a major supplier for Europe.
Russia’s state-controlled natural gas giant, Gazprom, is a major supplier for Europe.Alexander Zemlianichenko/Associated Press

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Completing a landmark trans-Atlantic trade agreement could help Europe wean itself from reliance on Russian energy supplies, the US trade representative, Michael Froman, says.

Froman made his comments here Saturday before a visit by President Obama that is scheduled to start Tuesday evening, with a summit meeting of European Union and US officials set for the following day. The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, now being negotiated, is among the items Obama is set to discuss with Herman Van Rompuy and José Manuel Barroso, the union’s top officials.

Obama’s visit, scheduled before the crisis erupted in Crimea, will be his first to Brussels since he took office. Energy is expected to be a key topic because of the heightened tensions with Russia.

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