Hogan cancels trip to US, Canada over coronavirus concerns


Hogan cancels trip to US, Canada over coronavirus concerns

16 March 2020
The European Union's top trade official has canceled plans to visit the United States and Canada next week as concerns escalate about the fast-spreading coronavirus, two EU officials said on Wednesday.

EU Trade Commissioner Phil Hogan had been scheduled to give two speeches in Washington and meet in Ottawa with 12 other members of the World Trade Organization trying to work out plans to reform the Geneva-based trade body.

"The trip is canceled," said one of the EU officials.

Hogan, who previously served as the EU's farm chief, said last week that Washington and Brussels were taking slow, small steps towards a "mini" trade deal. He has made resetting strained EU-U.S. economic relations a top priority.

The EU official withdrew from a conference on transatlantic trade to be hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Monday, along with White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow, and a speech on the EU's ideas for reforming the WTO at Georgetown University on Tuesday.