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EU, U.S. leaders launch free trade talks at G8

Monday, June 17, 2013 - 03:45

June 17 - The United States and the European Union launched negotiations for the world's most ambitious free-trade deal at the G8 summit on Monday. They are promising thousands of new jobs and accelerated growth on both sides of the Atlantic. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Trade between Europe and the United States is worth almost $3 billion a day and a pact could boost both the EU and U.S. economies by more than $100 billion a year each - an attractive prospect after the devastating impact of Europe's debt crisis. "This is a once in a generation prize and we are determined to seize it," said British Prime Minister David Cameron, flanked by U.S. President Barack Obama and the presidents of the European Commission and the European Council. The first round of negotiations will take place in Washington in July, Obama said, speaking at the Group of Eight summit near the Northern Irish town of Enniskillen. First considered three decades ago but knocked down by France in the 1990s, the idea of an EU-U.S. free-trade deal has gathered momentum as Brussels and Washington look to generate growth and China's rise prompts deeper Western integration. The United States and the European Commission, the executive body of the 27-country European Union, hope for a free-trade deal by the end of 2014 - a tight deadline in complex international trade talks that usually take many years. The European Union and the United States already account for about half the world's economic output and nearly a third of world trade, and bringing down the final barriers to trade could unleash billions of dollars in transatlantic business. But France threatened to block the start of talks until the other 26 EU governments accepted on Friday its demand to shield movies and online entertainment from the might of Hollywood and Silicon Valley. That kept Paris on board, but EU and U.S. officials have said that excluding any sector from the talks threatens the scope of comprehensive deal and could limit the economic gains. SOUNDBITE: David Cameron, British Prime Minister, saying (English): SOUNDBITE: Jose-Manuel Barroso, European Commission President, saying (English): SOUNDBITE: Barack Obama, U.S. President, saying (English): SOUNDBITE: Herman van Rompuy, European Council President, saying (English):

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EU, U.S. leaders launch free trade talks at G8

Monday, June 17, 2013 - 03:45