On 9 June 2023 in Riga, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Latvia, Edgars Rinkēvičs, met with the United States Trade Representative, Ambassador Katherine Tai, who is visiting Latvia. The officials discussed bilateral economic cooperation, transatlantic economic relations, cooperation in the EU-US Trade and Technology Council (TTC), and matters related to economic security.
Edgars Rinkēvičs noted the importance of investments by the United States as a strategic partner. “Latvia is interested in, and open to US investments, especially in the Latvian information and technology companies and strategic infrastructure projects such as Rail Baltica. At the same time, access by Latvian companies to the US market must be promoted,” the Foreign Minister noted.
The Foreign Minister also welcomed the close transatlantic cooperation within the framework of the EU-US Trade and Technology Council, noting in particular the unwavering provision of transatlantic support to Ukraine and cooperation on imposing sanctions against Russia.
At the same time, Minister Rinkēvičs expressed Latvia’s support for a positive EU-US trade agenda. “Given the current geopolitical situation, it is paramount to avoid new trade tensions; therefore, the EU and the US must clearly demonstrate the strength of transatlantic cooperation,” the Foreign Minister said.
In a discussion on cooperation towards the strengthening of economic security, the Foreign Minister emphasized that Latvia saw the US as an important partner for cooperation on restricting unfair trade practices and overcoming challenges to economic security, and he underlined the US experience in that field.
Edgars Rinkēvičs also stressed the need for trade diversification efforts with trusted partners, thereby reducing interdependence on countries that we do not share common values with.
Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs also introduced the US Trade Representative Katherine Tai to Latvia’s priorities in the EU-US Trade and Technology Council, which include emerging technologies, in particular, quantum computing, and skills development to promote digital transition, as well as the development of emerging technology industries. The Minister pledged Latvia’s readiness to implement specific projects in those fields.