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The EU's Role in Global GovernanceThe Legal Dimension$
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Bart Van Vooren, Steven Blockmans, and Jan Wouters

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199659654

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199659654.001.0001

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The Role of the EU in Shaping the Trade and Environment Regulatory Nexus: Multilateral and Regional Approaches

The Role of the EU in Shaping the Trade and Environment Regulatory Nexus: Multilateral and Regional Approaches

Chapter:
(p.224) 14 The Role of the EU in Shaping the Trade and Environment Regulatory Nexus: Multilateral and Regional Approaches
Source:
The EU's Role in Global Governance
Author(s):

Gracia Marin Duran

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199659654.003.0015

The EU appears determined to actively use its trade agreements with other countries or regions to advance its trade and environment agenda. This chapter asks: does ‘mutual supportiveness’ between trade and environment have the same meaning for the EU in the multilateral and bilateral/regional contexts? And to what extent, if at all, are the two approaches ‘mutually supportive’ in enhancing the Union's capacity to shape the trade and environment regulatory nexus at the global level? The chapter is organized as follows. Section 2 briefly introduces the trade and environment nexus to identify the key regulatory issues that will inform the analysis of the EU's approaches to the global governance of these issues. Section 3 examines the extent to which the EU legal framework enables ‘mutual supportiveness’ between EU external trade and environmental policies. Section 4 explores the EU's multilateral approach to the trade and environment nexus, focusing on one key regulatory issue of particular interest to the EU but still divisive among WTO members, namely: the clarification of the relationship between WTO rules and specific trade obligations contained in multilateral environmental agreements. Section 5 draws attention to an emerging shift in EU practice towards incorporating specific chapters on ‘trade and sustainable development’ in regional trade agreements. The chapter concludes with some reflections on the EU's role in shaping the trade and environment regulatory nexus at the global level.

Keywords:   European Union, trade policy, environmental policy, trade agreements, mutual supportiveness

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