The EU is to send a high-level trade delegation to Syria, despite the US decision to impose economic sanctions.
The EU is continuing its policy of engagement with Syria
The top EU energy and transport official will go this weekend, in a bid to improve co-operation on exporting oil and gas to Europe, the EU said.
On Tuesday, the US imposed economic sanctions on Syria after long accusing it of supporting terror and failing to stop militants entering Iraq.
Syria has denied wrongdoing and has denounced the actions of the US.
President George W Bush on Tuesday ordered a freeze on certain Syrian assets in
the US and a halt to all American exports apart from humanitarian items.
Syria is a member of the EU's Euro-Mediterranean
Partnership - a trade, aid and cultural pact which includes a
political and security dialogue.
"It's quite clear that the EU has a policy of engagement
with Syria," a European Commission spokesman said.
"We believe this agreement would be a very good instrument to
promote political and economic reform."