The WMD non-proliferation clause in EU trade agreements: A valuable contribution to the international nuclear nonproliferation regime?
A co-variational analysis of how the WMD non-proliferation clause affects the WMD non-proliferation behaviour of the EU’s trade partners.
The European Union (EU) is increasingly characterised as a global actor with considerable influence internationally. The EU derives much of its power from its internal market. The EU has been using this trade power to exert influence in other areas by including non-trade issues (NTIs) in its trade agreements with third countries. One such NTI is the weapons of mass destruction (WMD) non-proliferation clause. Now that the EU has acquired an influential position globally, the EU’s efforts to counter the proliferation of WMD may have a considerable positive impact on international security. Therefore, this study researched how the WMD non-proliferation clause included in EU trade agreements with third countries affects the WMD non-proliferation behaviour of those countries. The clause consists of three obligations: 1) Comply to existing WMD non-proliferation obligations, 2) Take steps to join more WMD non-proliferation obligations, 3) Develop an effective system of national export controls on dual-use items. In this study, WMD non-proliferation behaviour was conceptualised as the actions that countries have undertaken to fulfil these obligations. This study researched how the WMD non-proliferation clause affected countries’ WMD non-proliferation behaviour. Based on theories of conditionality it was hypothesised that if any effect of the clause would be visible, it would be visible after the trade agreement had entered into force. Based on theories of policy transfer it was hypothesised that countries with a trade agreement including the WMD non-proliferation clause would perform better on the three aspects that make up WMD non-proliferation behaviour than similar countries that did not have such a trade agreement. A co-variational analysis was carried out to test the hypotheses. The units of analysis were two countries that signed an EU trade agreement including the WMD non-proliferation clause prior to 2016, Albania and Indonesia. These two countries were each matched with a ‘control’ case that matched them on the relevant identified control variables. The results found confirming evidence for all but one hypothesis. Countries with the WMD non-proliferation clause did not perform better on the aspect of WMD non-proliferation behaviour that concerns taking steps to join more WMD non-proliferation obligations. However, these countries did perform better on the WMD non-proliferation behaviour aspects of complying with existing WMD non-proliferation obligations and developing an effective export control system than similar countries without said clause. However, only thin evidence was found for the latter hypotheses. More firm evidence was found for the hypothesis that improvements in WMD non-proliferation behaviour would be noted mostly after the agreement including the WMD non-proliferation clause was in place. The results demonstrate that the EU can use its trade power to exert influence in other areas. However, this influence was limited in the area of WMD non-proliferation. While the WMD non-proliferation clause did slightly strengthen the international non-proliferation regime, policy makers must consider whether there may be better ways than via trade to stimulate WMD non-proliferation.
|Dr. M. Onderco, Prof.dr. A.G. Dijkstra|
|Organisation||Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences|
Ilja Donkervoort. (2021, February 24). The WMD non-proliferation clause in EU trade agreements: A valuable contribution to the international nuclear nonproliferation regime?. Public Administration. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/2105/56503