University of Twente Student Theses


Mixity : where politics and law meet.

Derksen, Rik (2019) Mixity : where politics and law meet.

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Abstract:The conclusion of international agreements by the Union, its Member States and a third country is called mixity. This thesis focuses on the legal and political choice for the conclusion of mixed agreements. Since both aspects are correlated to each other, research question is formulated as: To what extent do politics influence the decision for a mixed bilateral agreement between the Union, its Member States and a third country since the entering into force of the Lisbon Treaty? The answer to the research seems to be two-folded. The role of politics in the choice for mixity is important when the objective to make an international agreement is based on geopolitical motives. The political motive to conclude international agreements as mixed are mostly related to regional stability or possible future assessment. These elements are politically sensitive and stress the inclusion of Member States in the conclusion of the agreement. Consequently, these agreements are concluded with third countries that lie close to the Union. The SAAs with the Balkan and the AAs in the domain of the ENP have been used as examples. Nevertheless, where international agreements are prepared with countries that are not internationally recognized by all Member States, the Union concludes the agreements as EU-only. Hence, the unification of the Union remains achievable. In these cases, the Union uses legal creativity to make it possible to conclude these agreements as EU-only. The majority of the concluded international agreements with third countries are trade agreements. In contradiction to other agreements, the political choice for mixity in trade agreements seems to decline. Trade agreements fall in the Union’s scope and, therefore, there is a choice for the use of mixity. Within the Union’s scope there is a discrepancy between the execution of competence and the conclusion of an agreement. The legal choice for mixity does not necessary determines the Union’s organ that concludes the agreement. Furthermore, the legal choice for mixity does not only derive from explicit powers, but also from implied powers through the duty of sincere cooperation, the principle of subsidiarity and the principle of autonomy. The political motives for the choice of mixity derive from the increasing role of the supranational organs since the entry into force of the Lisbon treaty. Member States have opted for mixity to be included in the concluding process. Furthermore, also Member State individual interests, such as ICS issues and public order, influence the political choice for mixity in trade agreements. Although these political motives have led to mixed agreements, in recent case-law, a shift seems to occur were the Court is in favor of the Union’s autonomy. The political motives of Member States do not necessarily lead to mixity anymore. Hence, the Court moves gradually away from the choice of mixity in trade agreements. However, the case-law of this shift is new, which thus limits the outcomes of this thesis. Furthermore, since the limited amount of data on the political choice for mixity, future research should be done in this specific field.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Unknown organization, Den Haag
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:89 political science
Programme:European Studies MSc (69303)
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