Written by Piotr Krajewski, 17 January 2022, European Law Blog

This short piece puts forward some critical remarks towards the EU’s commitment to global liberalisation of trade in the form of a constitutional objective (Article 3(5) and 21(2)(e) TEU). It is submitted that this objective is in current circumstances far less urgent and relevant than other constitutional objectives of EU external action, especially in the light of possible conflicts between trade liberalisation and sustainable development. Equally importantly, this commitment limits the room for political decision-making within the EU and hinders the development of a more strategic foreign policy based on a clear definition of the EU’s interests. These claims can be illustrated by the insistence of EU institutions to conclude, despite well-founded concerns, trade or investment deals with the Mercosur countries and China. In this context, trade-related objectives should sometimes give way to other priorities, preferably defined by political means.

Read the full article here.

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