Institutions, Policies and Challenges
Edited by Normann Witzleb, Alfonso Martínez Arranz and Pascaline Winand Winand
Chapter 8: European Union trade policy after the Lisbon Treaty: the Community method at work
Since the early days of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), the European Union (EU) has firmly established itself as a major player in international commercial diplomacy. This chapter first reviews the decades-long debate between the EU institutions and Member States on their respective decision-making powers in the field. Second, it analyses the changing roles of EU supranational institutions in formulating trade policy, particularly after the Treaty of Lisbon. Third, the chapter provides a sweeping overview of the EU’s pyramid of trade preferences with third countries. The steady development of bilateral and regional deep and comprehensive free trade agreements is a key characteristic of the EU’s external face, whereby trade agreements also have a significant geopolitical implication.
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