Beef and bananas top agenda at EU-US Summit

In the final EU-US Summit of President Clinton’s term of office it is again trade issues that top the agenda.

In the final EU-US Summit of President Clinton's term of office it is again trade issues that top the agenda. A resolution of at least one of the top two trade disputes - beef and bananas - was hoped for by many, including President Chirac as France's Presidency of the EU draws to an end. However, the prospects for this look slim.

The EU-US Summit will take place on 18 December in Washington DC. In addition to trade disputes, the agenda also contains issues such as the EU's rapid reaction force (RRF), the Middle East, the Balkans, landmines and climate change. With barely a month to go until Republican President-elect George W. Bush takes office, it is not expected that the meeting will result in any major decisions or initiatives.

The EU representatives will move on to Ottawa on December 19 for the EU-Canada Summit. Trade issues are also on the agenda of this meeting, with some major differences concerning wine exports and an EU levy on Canadian aluminium imports that will be difficult to resolve. Consultation on ESDP, landmines and climate change also figure prominently on the agenda.

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