Handbook on the EU and International Trade
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Handbook on the EU and International Trade

Edited by Sangeeta Khorana and María García

The Handbook on the EU and International Trade presents a multidisciplinary overview of the major perspectives, actors and issues in contemporary EU trade relations. Changes in institutional dynamics, Brexit, the politicisation of trade, competing foreign policy agendas, and adaptation to trade patterns of value chains and the digital and knowledge economy are reshaping the European Union's trade policy. The authors tackle how these challenges frame the aims, processes and effectiveness of trade policy making in the context of the EU's trade relations with developed, developing and emerging states in the global economy.
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Chapter 10: The EU’s foreign trade policy towards its eastern frontier: assessing its triangular trade relationship with Ukraine and Russia in the context of the Ukraine crisis

Nicholas Ross Smith


The EU has often been positioned as a potential economic superpower; an entity which uses its sizeable economy to pursue a powerful and coherent foreign policy. This chapter examines the EU’s trade policies towards Ukraine and Russia, with a strong focus on the Ukraine crisis, to assess whether it fits the bill as an emerging economic superpower. After a substantial examination of the EU-Russia-Ukraine trade triangle, before and after the crisis, two interrelated questions are raised. Firstly, to what extent did the EU’s trade policies contribute to the Ukraine crisis and, secondly, what lessons can the EU learn from the crisis? Ultimately, this chapter contends that the EU does have significant trade power which can be used to pursue foreign policy goals, but serious questions remain as to its effectiveness and coherency, which raises long-term questions about the EU’s potential to emerge as an economic superpower.

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