Sweeping US-EU trade talks to start in July

Associated Press
President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Durao Barroso, left, and  President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy, arrive to address a press conference on the first day of the G8 summit at Lough Erne in Northern Ireland, Monday June 17, 2013.  The G8 leaders from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, USA and UK are meeting at Lough Erne in Northern Ireland for a two day Summit, where the leaders are expected to discuss the ongoing conflict in Syria, and free-trade issues.(AP Photo / Kerim Okten)
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ENNISKILLEN, Northern Ireland (AP) — A top European Union official says talks on a sweeping new free trade agreement between the EU and the US will begin next month.

Jose Manuel Barroso, head of the EU's executive arm the Commission, said Monday at the G-8 summit in Northern Ireland that the deal could offer "huge economic benefits" for both sides of the Atlantic.

U.S. President Barack Obama added a deal would be "a priority of mine" and that he was "confident we can get it done."

Negotiations would focus on lowering tariffs and rules that hinder the trade of goods and services and is seen as a way of promoting new growth and jobs amid an uncertain global recovery.

Summit host British Prime Minister David Cameron said the trade pact could create 2 million jobs.