Eu International Relations And Diplomacy Politics Essay

“ Since the EU foremost began debating REACH, there has been guess that other states would be forced by the globalised nature of the chemicals industry to present similar controls ” .[ 1 ]

The European Union, from the economic brotherhood, transformed into a values based Union, seeking to advance and export its norms in the universe. The EU possibility to export its norms is strongly based on the attraction of the Single European Market, whereas the EU is the gatekeeper and by allowing entree to SEM “ can implement environmental criterions on its trading spouses ” .[ 2 ]

In this paper the inquiry that will be raised is to what extend does the EU ‘s normative power enhance or sabotage its ability to be a planetary power?

I will reason that the EU normative power does increase its ability to go an alternate planetary power, which sets the universe criterions. The of import status is that the normative EU policies are applied accordingly and can be supported.

The paper is based on the research of the EU ‘s internal policies and their impact on external histrions. The instance that will be analyzed in this paper will be the external impact of the REACH[ 3 ]Directive ( EC 1907/2006 ) . Although REACH was the internal ordinance of the European Commission, its deduction reached non European companies every bit good as their governments, coercing them to follow with this internal EU ordinance, but besides in many instances doing them alter their internal statute law and following one of REACH-like ordinance.

External impact of REACH Directive

The EU is seeking to accomplish normative aims through its policies, and as Manners argues, “ the cardinal constituent of normative power of Europe is that it exists as being different to preexistent political signifiers, and that this peculiar difference pre-disposes it to move in a normative manner ” .[ 4 ]We can reason that the EU is seeking to go a planetary histrion, but an alternate planetary histrion based on normative power, because of its historical background. S.Scheipers and D. Sicurelli argue that the EU is seeking to project itself as the ‘good ‘ booster in contrast to the ‘evil ‘ US, which has as its purpose the addition of EU credibleness in the universe.[ 5 ]

One of the best statements for the EU ‘s planetary power through normative agencies is the EU ‘s criterions for the merchandises, which circulate inside of the European Single Market. These merchandises, whether from the European manufacturers or non, have to run into the merchandise environmental conformity required through the EU statute law including different ordinances like RoHS ( Restriction of Hazardous Substances ) , MDDS ( Material Declaration Data Sheets ) and REACH Directive – Registration, A Evaluation, A Authorisation and Restriction ofA Chemical substances, which entered into force on 1 June 2007.[ 6 ]

REACH ‘s primary purpose is “ to guarantee a high degree of protection of human wellness and the environment ” .[ 7 ]Furthermore it “ will cover all chemical substances traded on the EU market ” .[ 8 ]That means, that all EU companies and the importation companies, are obliged to register each substance which appears on the EU market.[ 9 ]This effort of the EU aimed to increase the criterions of the merchandises for better wellness of the EU consumers, but besides to procure a cleansing agent environment and more sustainable industrial development.

However, “ REACH will hold clear impacts on companies in the United States[ 10 ]and elsewhere, desiring to sell merchandises in Europe ” .[ 11 ]That is why “ the U.S. authorities, U.S. industry, including its chemical industry associations ” were against the debut of the REACH Directive.[ 12 ]However the EU is utilizing REACH through the EU ‘s power market, implementing alterations on other histrions irrespective of the resistance.[ 13 ]The US industry suspected that the impact of REACH would coerce the governments to follow similar ordinances. However, if we look at it from the position of transatlantic dealingss, we can see that the EU showed its power against the US forcing frontward the REACH Directive. In that sense the EU became a taking power puting the criterions on the international degree in the field of chemicals.

Furthermore, where the companies will hold to set their merchandises to the demands of REACH, societal consciousness will besides increase in another states ensuing in force per unit area towards their authoritiess for the same protection from unsafe merchandises on the market. As Charlotte Brody, executive manager of Health Care Washington underlines “ the chemical industry is scared that the American people might non desire to be second-class universe citizens, if people in Europe have chemicals in their playthings that are non unsafe, possibly we do n’t desire those same chemicals for our childs ” .[ 14 ]

We can reason that the EU is progressively the taking topographic point of the US “ as the de facto compositor of planetary merchandise criterions and the centre of much planetary regulative criterion scene is switching from Washington DC, to Brussels ” .[ 15 ]

In Japan, accommodations besides had to be made to run into the REACH standards, “ as REACH is believed by Nipponese concern to go shortly a planetary criterion, a REACH Task Force has been established at Japan Chemical Industry Association in April 2007 ” .[ 16 ]Furthermore the Chinese exporters to the EU besides had to run into the REACH standard. Due to the high cost of accommodation of the merchandises, the Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection launched similar statute law in 2009.[ 17 ]

Furthermore, REACH has a direct, negative and positive, impact on the development states. These states, missing in cognition about the chemical jeopardies and safety, injury non merely their market but besides the markets where they export their goods. In that sense “ conformity with REACH will besides ease developing states attempts to make domestic systems for sound chemicals direction ” .[ 18 ]Furthermore, Frank Ackerman and others concluded in their research that the conformity with REACH Directive will non damage economically the development states, but may happen as important betterment of wellness and safety conditions.[ 19 ]

However, from another point of position, REACH might be seen as “ proficient trade barrier for companies outside the EU-25 ” .[ 20 ]It can be viewed as another manner for the EU to protect their internal industry, constructing the EU-fortress by regulative administrative officials in Brussels. The negative effects that REACH could hold on the chemical industries in third-world states led to the trade difference on the WTO degree. In June, the US Trade Representative Robert Zoellick reiterated that statement in a entry to the World Trade Organization ‘s Technical Barriers to Trade ” .[ 21 ]

The Single European Market, because of its size and capablenesss, plays a function of a motor for the external companies. This gives the EU the power of puting the regulation in a planetary graduated table over the merchandises which will come in the European market and for that ground EU can enforce higher criterions on these merchandises.[ 22 ]These regulations become universe criterions due to multinationals which want to absorb the cost of following by distributing it at the universe degree. It besides has to be underlined that it is easy to command the conformity of the EU criterions when it comes to the merchandises come ining the SEM.

Quality criterions are easy to export because they are easy to command. There are norms that the EU is unable to export such as minimal labour norms ( kids ‘s work, modern bondage, prohibition of trade brotherhoods ) . The EU puts it as a pre-condition for trade but is really unable to supervise it.


The EU existed for about 50 old ages as an economic brotherhood, advancing economic integrating, peace and wealth inside the old continent. These norms of the EU can besides be projected outside, doing the EU a new alternate power on the planetary scene.[ 23 ]The EU has the chance to make that, because of its big, attractive market ; has the presence in the universe market economic system and is a more and more active histrion besides in the political field. Last but non least, the EU has the capablenesss through the institutional scene and the different legal instruments. “ The Power of the EU lies in its ability to project its nucleus values beyond its boundary lines ” .[ 24 ]

Through the scrutiny of the REACH Directive we can clearly see that the EU ‘s internal policy has a important impact on the universe sphere. The major histrions of international dealingss, such as US and China, were about forced to alter their statute laws and follow REACH-like ordinances. Other developing states will besides be prone to come close their criterions to the EU ‘s, because of their close links to the EU market.

We have to underscore that the EU is successful, particularly in exporting the quality criterions such as the chemical limitations. In that sense the EU became a normative leader in the environmental issue. That normative power is evidently increasing the ability of the EU to go an alternate planetary power in this instance. However, we should non restrict ourselves and halt at these observations, farther research is needed particularly on export of criterions that the EU is non able to command, or on criterions that the EU refuses to supervise because of its economic involvements.