Negotiations on promoting the mutual recognition of qualification agreements, which could include the legal profession, should be launched following an EU-US summit in Washington DC later this month, the European Commission has advised.

In a policy paper preparing for the 20 June meeting, the Commission said negotiations should focus on sectors where an economic interest or need for such agreements has been substantiated. It said the summit should appoint negotiators on both sides for the agreed sectors, to draw up timetabled implementation plans within six months.

Brussels said by focusing on sectors where there was real demand for such mutual recognition, there was a better chance of overcoming difficulties impeding past efforts to secure such deals, notably to overcome issues of state jurisdiction in the US.