Washington: A broad range of issues like Iran, Eurozone economic crisis and situation in the Middle East are expected to dominate the US-EU Summit at the White House next week.
US President Barack Obama will welcome on Monday European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and High Representative Catherine Ashton along with other EU officials to the White House for a discussion on issues of mutual concern.
These issues include global economy; efforts to strengthen economic ties and growth; joint work to support democracy and prosperity in the European neighbourhood, across the Middle East and North Africa, and in other regions; their continuing coordination on Iran; and commitment to improve trans-atlantic law enforcement and counter-terrorism cooperation, a senior administration official said.
The US and EU already coordinate and cooperate closely on these issues bilaterally and in a number of multilateral fora, including the G-20 and G-8, officials pointed out.
Obama has noted that the US' relationship with Europe "Is the cornerstone of our engagement in the world. It's indispensable to the peace and prosperity of the world. It helps to uphold the principles of rule of law and individual liberty around the world."
The summit will be an opportunity to continue this work.
During an initial session in the Roosevelt Room, the President and EU leaders will look at how they can coordinate their response to developments within the Eurozone and the global economy in general.
The US and EU will consider specific steps that they can take -- including at the Transatlantic Economic Council meeting the next day to be co-chaired by Deputy National Security Adviser Mike Froman and EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht -- to reduce barriers to trade and investment between their markets and across the global economy, so as to create new opportunities for growth and jobs.
The summit is also expected to note the progress made on important negotiations to strengthen their cooperation on law enforcement, public security and counter-terrorism, including conclusion of a new Passenger Name Record agreement that should now be ratified on the EU side, as well as the initiation of negotiations earlier this year on an umbrella data privacy and protection pact that would ensure strong privacy protections for all individuals and thereby facilitate the sharing of data for such purposes.
At a working lunch in the Cabinet Room, the leaders will discuss their coordinated and combined efforts to respond to developments of the past year in North Africa and across the Middle East and priorities for the year ahead.
The US and EU have pursued coordinated action to encourage democratic transitions through their aid efforts and political engagement and to discourage negative actions by countries like Iran or Syria through sanctions.