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Finding the right balance across EU FTAs: benefits and risks for EU economic sectors

17-10-2018

Globally, anti-trade sentiment is on the rise, meaning it is incumbent upon policymakers to explore and explain the benefits of free and open trade. This study examines the costs and benefits of various free trade agreements (FTAs) that the EU has completed, will complete, or is contemplating. With regard to completed FTAs, the EU has seen benefits in terms of consumer choice but has a much larger and positive impact on its partners (although not as much as ex-ante modelling would suggest). For forthcoming ...

Globally, anti-trade sentiment is on the rise, meaning it is incumbent upon policymakers to explore and explain the benefits of free and open trade. This study examines the costs and benefits of various free trade agreements (FTAs) that the EU has completed, will complete, or is contemplating. With regard to completed FTAs, the EU has seen benefits in terms of consumer choice but has a much larger and positive impact on its partners (although not as much as ex-ante modelling would suggest). For forthcoming or contemplated FTAs, the issue of non-tariff barriers must be considered for FTAs with developed economies to be a success, while comprehensive liberalisation with emerging markets improves trade and other outcomes for both the EU and its partner. Across all FTAs, trade and economic metrics are improved by an agreement while indirect effects (human rights, environment) are less likely to change. We conclude that the EU must continue its focus on comprehensive liberalisation, incorporating NTBs effectively into new agreements, while tempering expectations of influence on human rights.

Parlamendiväline autor

Christopher HARTWELL, Veronika MOVCHAN

Research for AGRI Committee - Agricultural trade: assessing reciprocity of standards

15-05-2018

The aim of this study is to provide an assessment of the application of the reciprocity principle in EU agri-food trade at global level. The report provides substantial evidence for progresses occurring at worldwide level in regulatory rapprochement. Scientific cooperation, collaboration between risk assessment bodies, harmonization of control procedures and early warning systems for emerging hazards can facilitate progress in this direction, reducing transaction costs and information asymmetries ...

The aim of this study is to provide an assessment of the application of the reciprocity principle in EU agri-food trade at global level. The report provides substantial evidence for progresses occurring at worldwide level in regulatory rapprochement. Scientific cooperation, collaboration between risk assessment bodies, harmonization of control procedures and early warning systems for emerging hazards can facilitate progress in this direction, reducing transaction costs and information asymmetries in agri-food trade.

Parlamendiväline autor

A. Zezza, F. De Maria, M. R. Pupo D’Andrea, J. Swinnen, G. Meloni, S. Vandevelde, A. Olper, D. Curzi, V. Raimondi, S. Droguè

Free Trade Agreement between the EU and the Republic of Singapore – Analysis

16-03-2018

This study analyses provisions of the EU-Singapore Free Trade Agreement concluded in May 2015 ('EUSFTA'). It compares EUSFTA with other 'new-generation' free trade agreements, such as the EU-Republic of Korea and the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement. Overall, EUSFTA adopts a WTO+ approach and as a result significantly liberalises trade between the EU and Singapore compared to the current trade relationship. The study finds that a number of tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade ...

This study analyses provisions of the EU-Singapore Free Trade Agreement concluded in May 2015 ('EUSFTA'). It compares EUSFTA with other 'new-generation' free trade agreements, such as the EU-Republic of Korea and the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement. Overall, EUSFTA adopts a WTO+ approach and as a result significantly liberalises trade between the EU and Singapore compared to the current trade relationship. The study finds that a number of tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade in goods and services that currently exist between the parties will be reduced or removed on EUSFTA's entry into force. EUSFTA, as with other 'new-generation' FTAs negotiated by the EU, adopts a comprehensive approach, and contains innovative provisions on investment, intellectual property rights, competition and public procurement. It also contains provisions which reflect growing concerns about the impact of global trade, such as those on trade and sustainable development. With regard to EUSFTA's potential impact on trade, the economic modelling estimates an increase of around 10 % in trade volumes and greater volumes of foreign direct investment between the EU and Singapore as a result of the agreement. It also concludes that EUSFTA should lead to small increases of the gross domestic products of the EU and Singapore (0.06 % and 0.35 %, respectively). The responses of a wide-range of EU and Singaporean stakeholder consultation reveal that, in general, EUSFTA is viewed positively and is considered a very ambitious agreement, which will offer new opportunities for trade and investment in the EU and Singapore. However, some concerns have been raised, especially by small and medium-sized enterprises. The implications of the result of the Opinion of the Court of Justice of the EU in case 2/15 of 2017, on whether the EU had exclusive competence to sign and conclude EUSFTA alone, is also analysed in detail. The study recommends, notably, monitoring closely that commitments taken under sustainable development provisions are implemented and used effectively in practice.

Parlamendiväline autor

Glyn CHAMBERS, Managing Economist Capital Economics, Melanie DEBONO, Economist Capital Economics, Costas FRANGESKIDES, Partner Holman Fenwick Wilan, Jody GALLAGHER, Trainee Solicitor Holman Fenwick Willan, Dr Peter HOLMES, Reader in Economics at Sussex University (project leader), Jeremy KELLY, Associate Holman Fenwick Willan, Eirini ROUSSOU, Senior Associate Holman Fenwick Willan, Cliff STEVENSON, Cliff Stevenson Consulting, Anthony WOOLICH, Partner Holman Fenwick Willan

Ida-Aasia

01-01-2018

Aasia on kõige suurem ja rahvarohkem maailmajagu ning Euroopa Liidu jaoks geostrateegiliselt väga tähtis piirkond. ELil on Ida-Aasias kolm strateegilist partnerriiki: Hiina, Jaapan ja Korea Vabariik. Selles piirkonnas on julgeolekuprobleeme, näiteks Põhja-Korea tuumakatsetused ja territoriaalvaidlused Lõuna-Hiina mere üle. EL on tugev majandusjõud ning oluline abi ja arenguabi andja, kes toetab piirkonnas institutsioonide ülesehitamist, demokraatiat, head valitsemistava ja inimõigusi.

Aasia on kõige suurem ja rahvarohkem maailmajagu ning Euroopa Liidu jaoks geostrateegiliselt väga tähtis piirkond. ELil on Ida-Aasias kolm strateegilist partnerriiki: Hiina, Jaapan ja Korea Vabariik. Selles piirkonnas on julgeolekuprobleeme, näiteks Põhja-Korea tuumakatsetused ja territoriaalvaidlused Lõuna-Hiina mere üle. EL on tugev majandusjõud ning oluline abi ja arenguabi andja, kes toetab piirkonnas institutsioonide ülesehitamist, demokraatiat, head valitsemistava ja inimõigusi.

Benefits of EU international trade agreements

25-10-2017

Trade is the EU's most important link to the world beyond its borders. In force since the 1957 Treaty of Rome, the transition to a common EU trade policy was completed in 1968. It is the EU's oldest instrument influencing the bloc's foreign relations. Today, Article 207 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) establishes the common trade policy as an exclusive EU competence. Following the procedure under that legal basis the EU negotiates, concludes and implements trade agreements ...

Trade is the EU's most important link to the world beyond its borders. In force since the 1957 Treaty of Rome, the transition to a common EU trade policy was completed in 1968. It is the EU's oldest instrument influencing the bloc's foreign relations. Today, Article 207 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) establishes the common trade policy as an exclusive EU competence. Following the procedure under that legal basis the EU negotiates, concludes and implements trade agreements. Currently, the EU is negotiating and up-dating Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) with 19 countries and 2 sub-regional blocs, namely the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the Southern Common Market of South American countries (Mercado Común de Sur: Mercosur). Within the EU's latest trade strategy – the 2015 'Trade for All – Towards a more responsible trade and investment strategy', FTAs are considered instruments that contribute to the EU's objective of generating jobs and growth. About 31 million jobs in Europe depend, directly or indirectly, on the EU and its Member States' ability to trade. In other words, EU external trade concerns almost one in every seven jobs in Europe. In France, for example, over 2.2 million jobs rely on French exports outside the EU. Around 90 % of future global growth is expected to be generated outside Europe's borders. Figures show that the EU share of world GDP has slowly decreased in recent years (see graph below). Against this background, the EU needs to seize trade opportunities beyond its borders in order to gain higher levels of growth in Europe.

North Korea [What Think Tanks are thinking]

22-09-2017

North Korea has stepped up its nuclear plans with the underground detonation of a hydrogen bomb and tests of its first suspected Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs), moves perceived as a major threat to global security. Speaking at the United Nations General Assembly on 19 September, US President Donald Trump threatened to 'totally destroy' North Korea if the United States is forced to defend itself or its allies against that country. The isolated communist regime of Kim Jong-un has continued ...

North Korea has stepped up its nuclear plans with the underground detonation of a hydrogen bomb and tests of its first suspected Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs), moves perceived as a major threat to global security. Speaking at the United Nations General Assembly on 19 September, US President Donald Trump threatened to 'totally destroy' North Korea if the United States is forced to defend itself or its allies against that country. The isolated communist regime of Kim Jong-un has continued its nuclear programme, despite repeated rounds of sanctions imposed by the UN Security Council and diplomatic efforts to diffuse the conflict.

South Korea: Economic indicators and trade with EU

18-09-2017

South Korea is one of the top countries in terms of doing business and holds a good score within the Human Development Index. Meanwhile its economy has slowed in recent years and female labour market participation remains lower than most OECD countries, with little progress. Trade with the EU has benefitted from 2011 bilateral Free Trade Agreement, namely making a boost in EU's exports to South Korea.

South Korea is one of the top countries in terms of doing business and holds a good score within the Human Development Index. Meanwhile its economy has slowed in recent years and female labour market participation remains lower than most OECD countries, with little progress. Trade with the EU has benefitted from 2011 bilateral Free Trade Agreement, namely making a boost in EU's exports to South Korea.

North Korea: Possible scenarios

12-09-2017

On 3 September 2017, North Korea conducted a sixth nuclear test, its most powerful yet, claiming to have successfully tested a miniaturised hydrogen bomb that would fit in an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). The North Korean crisis, which has a long history, has now the potential to develop into a large-scale conflict affecting a large variety of actors across the globe. Pyongyang has become a global threat combining increasingly sophisticated nuclear weapons and missiles programmes that ...

On 3 September 2017, North Korea conducted a sixth nuclear test, its most powerful yet, claiming to have successfully tested a miniaturised hydrogen bomb that would fit in an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). The North Korean crisis, which has a long history, has now the potential to develop into a large-scale conflict affecting a large variety of actors across the globe. Pyongyang has become a global threat combining increasingly sophisticated nuclear weapons and missiles programmes that could strike the USA and even Europe. This has been made possible by the international community's lack of a common strategy and Chinese support for the North Korean regime. All the while, this 'hermit kingdom', which a 2014 United Nations (UN) report accused of crimes against humanity, has continued to feed its traditional anti-American rhetoric and has succeeded in taking its devastating human rights record off the international agenda. As the international community tries to resolve the current crisis, analysts have identified a number of possible scenarios: reinforcing international sanctions to push Pyongyang to the table to negotiate an agreement to renounce its nuclear programme in exchange for economic support and a guarantee of not being attacked; performing a pre-emptive strike against its nuclear sites, undergoing the risk of retaliation against Seoul; and assenting to North Korea's demand to be recognised as a de facto nuclear power and to conclude the peace treaty that was never signed at the end of the 1950-1953 Korean War ─ which ultimately is Kim's real goal and the reason for this escalation.

The EU-Latin American Strategic Partnership: state of play and ways forward

30-08-2017

By looking at the current social, economic and political trends in Latin America and the Caribbean and at recent developments in the EU’s relation with the region, this study explores windows of opportunity for advancing the EU-Latin American strategic partnership. It is argued that, although asymmetries between Europe and Latin America might impact and diminish the bi-regional relationship, the EU is well-positioned to play a more active role in Latin America by strengthening existing institutional ...

By looking at the current social, economic and political trends in Latin America and the Caribbean and at recent developments in the EU’s relation with the region, this study explores windows of opportunity for advancing the EU-Latin American strategic partnership. It is argued that, although asymmetries between Europe and Latin America might impact and diminish the bi-regional relationship, the EU is well-positioned to play a more active role in Latin America by strengthening existing institutional links, such as the strategic bi-regional partnership between the EU and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the Euro-Latin America Parliamentary Assembly (EuroLat). The study concludes with tailor-made recommendations in order to advance the EU’s engagement and cooperation with individual Latin American countries and with the region as a whole, both through traditional cooperative channels and through closer parliamentary links within the framework of EuroLat.

Parlamendiväline autor

Gustavo G. MÜLLER (Senior Researcher, Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies, University of Leuven, Belgium); Jan WOUTERS (Professor and Director, Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies, University of Leuven, Belgium); Jean-Christophe DEFRAIGNE (Professor, Institute for European Studies, University Saint-Louis Brussels, Belgium); Sebastian SANTANDER (Professor, Faculty of Law and Political Science, University of Liege, Belgium); Kolja RAUBE (Senior Researcher, Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies, University of Leuven, Belgium)

EU-South Korea free trade agreement

10-05-2017

The EU-South Korea free trade agreement (FTA), applied since July 2011, entered into force in December 2015. The agreement has successfully boosted EU-Korea trade exchange. The European Parliament is due to adopt a report on the five years of the FTA's implementation in May 2017.

The EU-South Korea free trade agreement (FTA), applied since July 2011, entered into force in December 2015. The agreement has successfully boosted EU-Korea trade exchange. The European Parliament is due to adopt a report on the five years of the FTA's implementation in May 2017.

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