At the G8 Summit in Co Fermanagh British Prime Minister David Cameron has announced plans for what he said could be "the biggest bilateral trade deal in history" between the EU and the US.
Mr Cameron announced the start of formal negotiations on a trade deal aimed at boosting exports and driving growth.
He said a successful agreement would have a greater impact than all other world trade deals put together.
US President Barack Obama said the first round of negotiations would take place in Washington in July.
The talks should reach a conclusion by the end of 2014. He said, however, that there would be sensitivities on both sides.
Mr Cameron said the deal could be worth £100bn (€118bn) to the EU economy, £80bn to the US and £85bn to the rest of the world.
Speaking on RTÉ’s Six One News, Taoiseach Enda Kenny said reaching a trans-Atlantic trade agreement would benefit businesses in both regions.
He said that the EU is also entering the closing stages of concluding a trade agreement with Canada.
Mr Kenny said that currently the US and the EU are the "biggest trading blocks on the planet" and he saw no reason why a trade agreement could not be concluded between the two.
He said that Ireland's exports to the US were worth €27bn in 2011, and he described the opportunities that would be created by securing a deal as "enormous".
President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy said: "Together Europe and the United States are the backbone of the world economy. Opening up that space further for opportunities for business and consumers is simply common sense."
Last week the trade talks were threatened by a potential veto from France, but on Friday EU ministers agreed to French demands to exclude its film and television industry from the talks.