The EU's Post‐Lisbon Free Trade Agreements: Commercial Interests in a Changing Constitutional Context

16 Pages Posted: 24 Oct 2014

See all articles by Sieglinde Gstöhl

Sieglinde Gstöhl

Humboldt University of Berlin

Dominik Hanf

Office of Harmonisation for the Internal Market (OHIM)

Date Written: November 2014

Abstract

This article examines how the Common Commercial Policy in the post‐Lisbon era impacts citizens' rights both within the EU and in the partner countries. The EU's aspiration to pursue a normative agenda through trade has further been reinforced by the Lisbon Treaty, both with regard to the objectives of external action and the reformed trade policy‐making processes. Concurrently, however, the EU has refocused its trade strategy on growth and competitiveness, and strongly advocated the conclusion of ‘new generation’ free trade agreements. These agreements combine an ambitious ‘WTO‐plus’ agenda with normative issues such as provisions on human rights, a social dimension and sustainable development. The result of this dual approach is a mixed ‘constitutional balance’: whereas constitutional rights and competitiveness have the potential to reinforce each other with positive synergy effects, they may also result in tensions and policy incoherencies.

Suggested Citation

Gstöhl, Sieglinde and Hanf, Dominik, The EU's Post‐Lisbon Free Trade Agreements: Commercial Interests in a Changing Constitutional Context (November 2014). European Law Journal, Vol. 20, Issue 6, pp. 733-748, 2014, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2514607 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/eulj.12102

Sieglinde Gstöhl (Contact Author)

Humboldt University of Berlin ( email )

Unter den Linden 6
D-10178 Berlin, AK 10099
Germany

Dominik Hanf

Office of Harmonisation for the Internal Market (OHIM)

Alicante
Spain

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