Parliamentary questions
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2 May 2016
Question for oral answer O-000075/2016
to the Commission
Rule 128
Antonio Tajani, Othmar Karas, Krišjānis Kariņš, Daniel Caspary, on behalf of the PPE Group
Patrizia Toia, Maria Grapini, Dan Nica, on behalf of the S&D Group
Kay Swinburne, on behalf of the ECR Group
Reinhard Bütikofer, Michael Theurer

 Subject: EU economic diplomacy

Commission President Juncker’s agenda sets out, among its top ten priorities, the need for the ‘EU [to be] a stronger global actor’. In keeping with this aim, the EU should continue to promote its competitiveness and leading role in strategic sectors such as industry and energy at global level. In this context, important challenges have to be addressed in order to keep the EU’s economy competitive on a global scale. These include, inter alia, a growing demand for energy and critical raw materials derived from scarce resources, raising potential problems with regard to security of supply and sustainability.

Moreover, there is a huge untapped potential for the EU economy in emerging third-country markets. In this regard, the Commission has already developed successful tools, such as the ‘Missions for Growth’, which have been carried out in around 30 regions and countries, and have proved to be very helpful in facilitating EU companies, in particular SMEs, to expand their activities in third countries.

The improvement of such tools for economic diplomacy at Union level could be crucial to efforts to address economic challenges and opportunities at global level. Does the Commission consider developing such diplomacy-related tools in the economic and trade sector and, if so, which initiatives does the Commission intend to undertake in pursuit of this aim?

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