The European Union (EU) is an economic and political union of 27 member states located primarily in Europe. The EU is a major global player and has a wide range of international agreements with other countries, regions, and international organizations. In this article, we will explore the EU`s competence in international agreements.
What is EU competence?
EU competence refers to the areas of policy-making where the EU has the power to act and make decisions. The EU`s competence is defined in the EU treaties, which outline the scope of the EU`s authority in various policy areas. The EU`s competence is divided into three main categories: exclusive competence, shared competence, and supporting competence.
Exclusive competence means that only the EU can legislate and adopt legally binding acts in a particular policy area. Shared competence means that both the EU and its member states can legislate and adopt legally binding acts in a particular policy area. Supporting competence means that the EU can only support, coordinate, or supplement the actions of its member states in a particular policy area.
EU competence in international agreements
One of the EU`s key areas of competence is in the field of international relations. The EU has its own foreign policy, which is set out in the EU treaties. The EU has the power to negotiate and enter into international agreements with other countries, regions, and international organizations in areas of exclusive competence.
The EU has concluded a large number of international agreements covering a wide range of areas, including trade, investment, human rights, environmental protection, and security. The EU`s international agreements are binding on all member states and are designed to further the EU`s policy objectives.
The EU`s competence in international agreements is facilitated by its unique institutional structure. The European Commission negotiates international agreements on behalf of the EU, under the guidance and direction of the member states` governments. The European Parliament is also involved in the negotiation process and has the power to approve or reject the final agreement. Once an agreement is concluded, it must be ratified by all EU member states before it can enter into force.
In conclusion, the EU`s competence in international agreements is a key aspect of its foreign policy and global influence. The EU has the power to negotiate and enter into legally binding agreements with other countries, regions, and international organizations in areas of exclusive competence. The EU`s institutional structure facilitates the negotiation and approval of international agreements, ensuring that all member states have a say in the EU`s external relations. The EU`s international agreements are designed to further the EU`s policy objectives, and are an important tool for promoting the EU`s values and interests on the global stage.