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EU, U.S. Launch Trade Talks

U.S. President Barack Obama (second from left), with British Prime Minister David Cameron (right), European Council President Herman Van Rompuy (left), and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso at the G8 summit in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland.
The United States and the European Union are launching talks on a sweeping new free trade agreement.

U.S. President Barack Obama and European Union leaders, speaking at a G8 summit in Northern Ireland, have announced that the talks will begin next month in Washington.

The agreement would lower tariffs that hinder trade in goods and services and is seen as a way to create jobs and fuel economic growth.

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said the deal could offer "huge economic benefits" for both sides.

Obama said the deal would "support hundreds of thousands of jobs on both sides of the [Atlantic] ocean."

British Prime Minister David Cameron, the host of the G8 summit, said the trade pact could be "the biggest bilateral deal in history."

Based on reporting by AP and AFP