Trading Places: The New Dynamics of EU Trade Policy Under the Treaty of Lisbon
German Marshall Fund Economic Policy Paper, October 2010
17 Pages Posted: 29 Oct 2010
Date Written: October 1, 2010
After nearly a decade of fits and starts, the Treaty of Lisbon, providing for a reformed institutional framework for the European Union (EU), entered into force on December 1, 2009. With it came a number of critical but little noticed changes in the area of European trade policy. This policy brief broadly outlines these changes and argues that a good understanding of the new EU trade policy regime will be essential for Europe’s trading partners and their trade experts and policy makers, as EU institutional reform will result in substantial shifts in the process and substance of EU bilateral and multilateral trade and investment regimes. At the heart of the reform lies the empowerment of the European Parliament in the area of trade legislation and trade agreements. In addition, a number of issues that had been left up the individual member states of the EU or which shared governance authority between the individual EU member states and the European Union, most notably investment, services and trade-related intellectual property, will now fall exclusively under the purview of the European Union. Finally, trade policy now falls under the umbrella of European External Action, rendering it subject to a number of broad EU foreign policy goals such as democracy, the rule of law, human rights, sustainable economic and environmental development, and good global governance.
Keywords: Trade, EU, European, Policy, Lisbon, Treaty, Reform, European Parliament, European Council, European Commission, SWIFT
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