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BRUSSELS: President Joe Biden on Friday said the US and EU had reached a new agreement on the transfer of personal data that would replace previous arrangements that were struck down by Europe’s top court over spying concerns. The urgently needed arrangements came as US tech giants faced a barrage of lawsuits from EU activists who are concerned about the ability of US security services to access the personal data of Europeans. This will be a third attempt for a new data arrangement and succeeds deals that were invalidated after successful lawsuits argued that US laws violated the fundamental rights of EU citizens. The deal “underscores our shared commitment to privacy, to data protection and to the rule of law”, Biden said in a joint press appearance in Brussels with EU commission president Ursula von der Leyen.

He said the new deal, which was agreed in principle, would allow the EU executive “to once again authorise” the vast data flows and shore up the economic relationship with the EU.

Von der Leyen hailed “another step in strengthening our partnership” that will enable “predictable and trustworthy data flows”. The pact for now puts to rest an issue that had become a nagging impediment to deeper transatlantic cooperation on trade and tech regulation and threatened to seriously disrupt business.

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