Over the past three decades, the deepening and widening of European integration has propelled the EU to a prominent role on the global stage. Many internal Union policies have important external dimensions, from competition and chemical regulation through food safety and data privacy to justice and security.
Primary authority for trade policy itself rests with the EU institutions, whose external competences and capacities have been reinforced more generally by the Treaty of Lisbon. As the world’s largest single market, with well- developed capacities for innovative regulation, the EU has emerged as an influential player in global standard- setting and regulatory cooperation. Together with the member states, the EU also remains the world’s largest source of official development assistance, with an ambitious agenda for promoting aid effectiveness and governance reform. read more