EU Policies and Approaches
Leuven Global Governance series
Edited by Jan Wouters, Axel Marx, Dylan Geraets and Bregt Natens
Chapter 3: Good global governance through trade: constitutional moorings
Ensuring good global governance through trade is not just a powerful idea,or a global ‘strategy’; it is also firmly anchored in the highest laws of the European Union (EU or Union) – its ‘constitutional charter’. According to the Treaty on European Union (TEU), the EU is to ‘promote an international system based on stronger multilateral cooperation and good global governance’ (Article 21(2)(h)) and ‘uphold and promote its values and interests’ (Article 3(5)) in its external relations. One crucial means to these lofty ends is the EU’s Common Commercial Policy (CCP). This policy is concerned a priori with the pursuit of goals at the heart of international trade, such as ‘free and fair trade’ (Article 3(5) TEU) and ‘the harmonious development of world trade, the progressive abolition of restrictions on international trade and on foreign direct investment’ (Article 206 Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU); see also Article 21(2)(e) TEU). However, as a textual innovation through the Lisbon Treaty reform, the CCP is henceforth to ‘be conducted in the context of the principles and objectives of the Union’s external action’ (Article 207(1) TFEU). Among these, we find now a plethora of foreign policy objectives – a ‘wish list for a better world’, if you will – which can be placed under the general conceptual umbrella of ‘good global governance’. ‘Global governance’ can be defined as ‘the management of global problems and the pursuit of global objectives through concerted efforts of states and other international actors’.
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