Trade Agreements as Venues for ´Market Power Europe´? The Case of Immigration Policy
This article is written in the context of a research project on ‘Venue-Shopping in International Migration Governance within the National Centre for Competence in Research NCCR “Trade Regulations”’ co-ordinated by the World Trade Institute in Berne («http://www.nccr-trade.org/»). Funding by the Swiss National Science Foundation is gratefully acknowledged. For useful comments on earlier versions of this article we would like to thank Marion Panizzon and Thomas Winzen as well as the two anonymous reviewers.
In the absence of an international migration regime, the rising salience of migration issues and the limits of unilateral policies led the European Union to seek appropriate venues for co-operation with the sending and transit countries of migrants. Many of the newer relevant multilateral or regional venues are soft law frameworks. Conversely, trade agreements provide a formal, hard law instrument for inserting migration clauses. Based on a quantitative analysis of EU trade agreements and expert interviews, this article investigates how far the EU is engaging in strategic issue-linkage when including migration clauses in its trade agreements. Testing hypotheses derived from rationalist and institutionalist approaches, it thereby provides an empirical test of its acclaimed identity as ‘trade power’ or ‘market power’.