Merkel aide: We'll do everything to conclude US trade deal

AP News
Posted: Aug 31, 2016 2:50 AM

BERLIN (AP) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel's chief of staff is insisting that Berlin wants to press ahead with concluding a sweeping European Union-U.S. trade deal, underscoring divisions in the country's governing coalition.

Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel, who's also vice chancellor and leads the center-left junior party in Merkel's coalition, has said that trade negotiations with the U.S. "have de facto failed."

Merkel's conservatives, however, are standing by the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Her chief of staff, Peter Altmaier, said the government had agreed three years ago that TTIP should go ahead because it's in Germany's interest.

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He told ZDF television Wednesday: "We will do everything to achieve TTIP. The final negotiations over the final meters will be particularly difficult — they always are — but I think we can achieve it."