The European Union and the United States have agreed to discuss a possible US-US merger of the digital media sector, the EU Commission said on Tuesday.
The commission said the deal would help “further accelerate and broaden access to digital media across the European Union”.
In a statement, the commission said it had agreed with the US on a “mutual framework” for the EU’s digital media to “be more competitive, more innovative, and more inclusive”.
The US and the EU “have committed to a long-term framework of convergence for digital technology and digital services, in which the EU will take a leading role, particularly in digital media and in digital services markets”, the commission added.
EU digital rights commissioner Joaquin Almunia said that “at a time of uncertainty, the need for more robust and effective cooperation” between the two EU nations “has never been stronger”.
“We are very proud of the European Commission’s role in this matter, and its cooperation with the United Kingdom to secure the best possible deal for the digital sector,” Almunias said.
The agreement between the US and EU was reached by a secret vote, with the EU voting in favour and the US voting against.
“We hope that this will be the beginning of a long term relationship between the EU and the USA in the digital world,” EU commissioner for digital rights Andrus Ansip told the European Parliament.
“I hope that there will be some concrete steps in the next year to make that happen.”
The US, which has a close relationship with the European government, was one of the main sponsors of the deal.
In the wake of the US decision to pull out of the Paris climate agreement, the European commission is expected to push to establish an “international climate change” framework, with its member states adopting the necessary laws to achieve it.
The European Commission said it hoped that “this framework will help the US to achieve its climate goals”, adding that it would “ensure that the US has a global platform to advance climate action”.
The EU also proposed that the bloc “be able to create a new international climate framework, and we hope that the new framework will be adopted by the USA and the other countries”.