The United States is the official partner country for the 2016 Hannover Trade Fair (25-29 April). President Barack Obama will travel to Germany to participate in the opening of this year’s Trade Fair alongside Chancellor Angela Merkel. Both President Obama and Chancellor Merkel will use the occasion to argue why encouraging increased trade between Germany and the United States serves both countries vital interests. The flagship effort to do so, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), has encountered however broad democratic resistance in Germany. Building new frameworks for growing trade is also controversial in the United States, as evident in American presidential candidates expressing doubts about the Pacific version of TTIP, the Transpacific Partnership (TPP). We are thus at a critical juncture in the global, transpacific, and transatlantic debates about the politics and possibilities of trade.
On the occasion of President Obama’s visit to Germany to “talk trade”, American Space Leipzig is organizing a one-day symposium to discuss and debate how TTIP has become a focus of democratic deliberations about encouraging prosperity, protecting society, and pursuing good government. The “Handelsstadt” Leipzig likes to say about itself that trade and its own Trade Fair have helped make it an open and tolerant city. Does TTIP present such an opportunity to encourage diversity and democracy in the transatlantic community? 2016 will be a decisive year for helping provide answers to this fundamental question.
Symposium languages are German and English.
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