Choose your language:

Working Paper

There Is No Reciprocity Latin America and Europe :

Unequal Entanglements
International Research Network on Interdependent Inequalities in Latin America
Volume, number, page: 
n.91, pp.1-22
This paper presents the transformations of Latin American-European relations over time as an interdependent unequal relationship. These relations have been shaped by exports of commodities, including the enrichment of European foodways with indigenous Latin American crops and the environmentally destructive extraction of natural resources and commercial export agriculture. The transformation under colonialism led not only to the settlement of Europeans in Latin America but also to the Atlantic slave trade. The consequence of these relations of domination even today is a limited acknowledgement of Latin America as being more than an extension of Europe. With the end of European immigration to and from Latin America, the role of the United States has grown instead, and increasingly developments in Latin America have also taken on their own dynamics, decoupled from Europe. In the coming decades, relations with China which have grown rapidly in commerce and commodity exports are likely to transform the role of Europe in the region yet again.

European and Chinese trade competition in third markets :

the case of Latin America
Volume, number, page: 
n.6, pp.1-15.
Considered Countries: 
China’s increasingly important role in the global economy has transformed the nature of global competition and reshaped international trade.
Meanwhile, the European Union has long been the most important power in global trade and continues to run a very large trade surplus. We
address whether China is an increasingly relevant competitor for Europe in third markets, and in particular in Latin America. More specifi cally, we
empirically estimate the elasticity of substitution between European exports and Chinese exports to Latin American economies (ie how their exports to Latin America respond to the changes in relative exporting prices).

The European Union and Brazil in the Quest for the Global Diffusion of Human Rights: Prospects for a Strategic Partnership

Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
Volume, number, page: 
Considered Countries: 
The European Union’s identity as an international actor has been strongly associated with the promotion
of human rights at the global level. On this basis, the EU has played an active role in the strengthening of
international human rights regimes. Similarly, the advocacy of universal human rights is also a principle
and an objective of the Brazilian foreign policy. The role which Brazil plays in international regimes
increases its global relevance as an emerging power. Based on their shared interest in promoting
effective multilateralism, the EU and Brazil concluded a Strategic Partnership in 2007. Not surprisingly,
the promotion of human rights at the global level features as one of the objectives of this alliance. To this
end, the partners agreed to further coordinate their position and reinforce cooperation at the multilateral
level, including at the UN Human Rights Council. But have the EU and Brazil succeeded in their joint
promotion of human rights in the international arena? The paper discusses this question in four stages.
First, it analyses the EU’s conception of strategic partnerships as one of the instruments to facilitate the
promotion of ‘effective multilateralism’, and the partnership with Brazil in particular. In a second stage, we
explore the argument that an important precondition for the success of the partnership is the compatibility
of human rights approaches. The present paper thus compares the approaches of the EU and Brazil
regarding this issue area. The third part analyses the actual EU-Brazil engagement regarding human
rights. First, it looks at how the context of their Strategic Partnership has developed as a platform to
facilitate coordination regarding a multilateral human rights agenda. Confronting human rights discourse
in practice, the paper then assesses EU-Brazil engagement at the Human Rights Council. The paper
concludes that a strategic human rights partnership between the EU and Brazil has not (yet) emerged.
While such partnership holds important potential, significant mutual accommodation to the divergent
interests of both partners is needed in order for this cooperation to materialise in practice.

Multilayered International Parlamentarism: The Case of EU-Brazil Relations

Volume, number, page: 
Considered Countries: 
Challenging the predominant scholarly focus on international parliamentary
institutions as the sole and sufficient object of inquiry into the global role of parliaments, this
article argues that international interparliamentary relations do not occur merely within isolated
forums, but may and do de facto evolve in layers of overlapping forums whenever circumstances
allow it. This article conceptualises multilayered international parliamentarism as developing in
webs of formal and informal linkages between the same parliamentary institutions in a variety
of bilateral and multilateral frameworks regarding the same region. To this end, I conduct an
in-depth case study of bilateral and multilateral relations between the parliaments of the EU
and Brazil through the lens of institutional arrangements as well as by examining the reaction
of the Brazilian and certain other Latin American parliaments to the EU’s Returns Directive.
The analysis shows that intensified international contacts among parliamentarians accentuate
the deliberative function of parliaments and foster their ‘diplomatic’ actorship in foreign affairs
in a concerted attempt to counterbalance globalisation-propelled ‘negotiated democracy’
nurtured by intergovernmental and transgovernmental ways of doing politics and making law.

The EU's Role and Interest in Promoting Regional Integration in Central America

Volume, number, page: 
As the EU’s regional strategy paper for Central America states, the Union actively promotes and supports the Central American regional integration process in a wide variety of ways. In this working paper, we will critically analyze whether or not this truly is the case, and, if so, how the EU then shapes this support. We will argue that the EU indeed does so because of various strategic considerations and through various ways of financial and technical assistance, by negotiating a free trade agreement, and through region-to-region political dialogue and norm diffusion.

The European Union and Central America: negotiating an interregional agreement

Volume, number, page: 
Considered Countries: 
Regional integration schemes have proliferated around the world and with them the
interaction between regions or interregionalism. The European Union (EU) has been
supporting these integration efforts worldwide, putting special attention to Latin America
(CARICOM and the Andean Community) and to the Central American case in particular.
Relations with Europe have played an important role in the history of this region,
especially in the last decades. Europe’s active participation in the democratic transition
was instrumental for the consolidation of peace in the region. These efforts started with
the Diálogo de San José (1984). From the European perspective it was clear in that
moment that a national and regional approach was needed in order to successfully
achieve regional pacification and stability. The Dialog gave birth to an increasing
biregional interaction that currently seeks to strength the relations with an Association
Agreement (AA). This AA between Central American countries and the EU constitutes
the first biregional agreement in the world; but why is the EU interested in strengthening
its relations with Central America? Why is the EU negotiating an AA with this region?
The present essay seeks to evaluate critically EU’s interest in CA giving priority to the
political interest at stake considering that economic motivations are marginal due to the
trade among these regions. This paper proposes that EU’s main driving force behind the
negotiations is of political nature and its main goals are: (1) to strengthen its actorness in
the international community, particularly within the triad and with strong competence
with the US; (2) to promote its integration model and the echoing of its process or what
some scholars call Europeanization; (3) to promote inter-regionalism and region-toregion
dialog by insisting in negotiating with CA as a whole; and finally (4) to use the
AA as a tool to achieve and strengthen consensus within state members. Nevertheless it is
important to bear in mind that due to the integral characteristics of this accord it
strengthens relations on several fields: economical, political and of cooperation which for
the EU vision are interdependent issues. Finally I conclude pointing out the main
difficulties in exporting a model and suggest future research directions.

Managing global interdependence on the Central American Isthmus: EU-Central America Interregional Relations

Volume, number, page: 
The European Union (EU)-Central American interregional relationship has often been referred to as “one of the most successful examples of EU relations with any sub-region in the world” (former Commissioner for External Relations Christopher Patten, 2003). In summer 2013, the EU and Central America agreed on an Association Agreement, which was the first of its kind concluded between regions. The EU has now also established a region-to-region delegation in Managua, Nicaragua. This paper analyses the EU’s interests in pursuing such relations and argues that it mostly does so in order to promote liberal internationalism. Data was acquired through a literature review and – primarily – a large number of interviews conducted in Europe as well as Central America.

The experience of European integration and the potential for integration in South America

Fundació CIDOB
Volume, number, page: 
The experience of the European Union is the most significant and far-reaching
among all attempts at regional integration. It is, therefore, the most likely to provide some
lessons for those world regions that are just beginning this complex process. In turn, the
Common Market of the South (MERCOSUR) and the Andean Community (CAN) are among
the regional integration projects that have reached the greatest level of formal accomplishment
after the EU. MERCOSUR is a customs union that aspires to become a common market,
while avowing the commitment to advance towards political integration. For its part,
CAN is a customs union that has already developed supranational institutions such as a
Commission, a Parliament and a Court of Justice. In both cases, however, words have progressively
tended to wander far from deeds. One reason underlying this phenomenon may
be a misunderstanding of the European experience with integration. In this article, we discuss
the theories that have been developed to account for integration in Europe and may
prove useful to understand integration elsewhere and put forward a set of lessons that could
be drawn from the European experience. Subsequently, we introduce a description of the
experience of integration in South America and reflect (critically) on how the theories and
lessons drawn from the EU could be applied to this region -and beyond.


Subscribe to RSS - Working Paper