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The Lisbon Treaty makes amendments to the two core treaties of the European Union. The treaties that are core to the European Union include the treaty of establishing the European Union and treaty on the European Union. The treaty of establishing the European Union is meant to ensure smooth functioning of the European Union. The treaty has several Declarations and Protocols attached to the Lisbon treaty. The Lisbon treaty helps in extending the responsibilities of the European Union in its negotiations on foreign economic arrangements. This negotiation ranges from trade in goods to and services to trade in investment. Given that trade in services and investments are critical to the EU economy, it may turn out that the European Union may have provisions for negotiating advantages. Changes in power have an impact on the European Union’s negotiation process. The negotiating power of the European Union is affected by various factors when everything is negotiated the same way. The kind of power change would depend on the effect of the negotiating power by the Union.
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The changes in power are in the decision-making process and it is found that the states with voice disagreements over the commission’s proposals usually have the least success in bargaining. Again, smaller states usually have higher success in bargaining since they do better than larger states. These smaller states’s success affects the negotiation process due to their ability to take their positions closer to the potential winners at first (Smaghi, 2004). Changes in power will affect the procedure utilized in the negotiation process. Given that the power of the Commission degenerates, it would not represent the EU effectively. Its ability to present recommendations to EU Council that initiates negotiations would also be doomed by the case of decreased power (Smahi, 2004). The Commission acts on the mandate of EU Council and changes in power would the ability of the Commission to conduct the negotiations.
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The external economic performance of the European Union has a number of strengths and weaknesses. Its strengths are based on the member states, which are among the richest countries in Europe and in the world. The union Commission also has power to initiate various changes that benefit the member countries against the non-member nations. The member countries have high negotiating power. Globalization is also a force behind the EU’s strengths (Radu, 2008). The market characteristics of having capitalism traits ensure control of other market players in the world. The union ensures efficiency in its market operations and takes advantage of cases of market instability as well as inequality. Notably, the European Union has market integration that pushes many countries to its trade activities. The union’s common rules as well as net mechanisms of social safety are among the numerous strengths serving as inspiration to many countries. Promoting the politically managed globalization ensures that the union’s potential benefits reach nations beyond its membership (Radu, 2008).
Other than the strongholds of the European Union also faces some problems associated with some weaknesses within the Union. The EU has hardly been able to fight against the emerging strengths of some developing nations like Brazil and India. EU has been unable to run its operations like it used before. The union is faced with slow growth and adjustments in predicting and acting against any emerging nations or other unions that can pose threats to its smoothing trading activities. The EU is also faced with contradictions in its strategies of globalization and international trade. The EU is faced with a multipliccation of special regimes as well as some specific institutional arrangements by groups of countries, which bring in confusion or even conflict within the EU (MEUNIER, 2007). These confusions have contributed to a conflict of the union rules rendering its operations weak. Again, there is hardly any hierarchy in the international system, which makes any conflicts within the Union difficult to solve and are future source of more weaknesses to the EU. To strengthen the EU, more emphasis should be placed on the way of elimination the control of globalization by the union against other emerging nations and unions. The EU should push more on stopping any cases of conflicts within the union and influence by non-member nations.
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Every member country in the European Union has the power to make the union has a better competitive advantage than other economies and union in the rest of the world. The performance of individual countries can contribute to the EU competitiveness by competing against non-member countries as individual nations while working within the EU’s guidelines (Radu, 2008). The member countries can only make the union have better competitiveness than other economies by improving their cooperation abilities and working towards achievement of common goals. They can work towards strengthening competition against global giants like the US, Russia, China, India, and Japan as well as any emerging economies in the rest of the world (MEUNIER, 2007). Individual member nations can ensure better competitiveness of the EU by prioritizing on one set of interest over other interests. This prioritization of interests would act as a way of promoting multilateralism, which would initiate liberalization on the global economy. There should be hardly any clashes of interest among members of the European Union if the union has to improve in its competitiveness (Radu, 2008).
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