Chubb chairman Dean O'Hare has warned that businesses could suffer if transatlantic trade disputes are allowed to escalate.

O'Hare, who is one of president George W Bush's advisers on trade policy, said the two trading blocs of the European Union and north America should resolve their

differences.

Speaking at a conference on EU-US relations, he pointed out that businesses on both sides of the Atlantic relied on access to foreign markets for future growth.

“If we can't gain access to these markets, we will stop growing and will stop generating jobs.”

O'Hare said the ongoing row over banana sales and other disputes threatened to spiral out of control if action were not taken.