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Regulating EU External Trade


Course Description:
The course examines the European Union’s (EU) external agreements with third countries, focusing on the different models of economic integration or cooperation, as the case may be. This includes in particular the models reflected by the European Economic Area Agreement (EEA), the sectoral treaties with Switzerland, the Association agreement with Turkey (Ankara Agreement), cooperation and partnership agreements such as with Russia, modern style agreements that are largely or even entirely based on WTO law such as the Association Agreement with Ukraine and the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with Canada and, finally, a potential alternative framework for EU-UK relations following Brexit. The discussion of the different models is preceded by a general introduction into the legal framework of the EU’s external relations law.


Europa Institute Steenschuur 25 2311 ES Leiden Phone: 071-527 7760 Website: Sheena Bruce, Phone: +31 (0)71 527 7821

** Lecturer(s): **
Prof. Christa Tobler and others

Course Objectives:

Objectives of the course:
The objective of this course is to provide the students with systematic knowledge relating to the EU external agreements in the economic field.

Achievement levels:
The following achievement levels apply with regard to the course:
Knowledge and comprehension: At the end of this course, students will be able to outline the differences between different models of EU external agreements in the economic field.
Application: At the end of this course, students will be able to discuss and apply legal issues related to the EU’s external agreements in the economic field.
Analysis: At the end of this course, students will be motivated to place day-to-day political developments relating to the EU external economic relations in a systematic legal context and to reflect critically on such developments.
Presentation: At the end of this course, the students will be able to make oral presentations and write papers on the issues covered.

Mode of Instruction:
Seminars with presentations and class discussion.

Assessment Method(s):
During the course, students will be asked to make group presentations. Based on these, students will be asked to write group or individual papers.

Reading List:

  • General external relations literature, including e.g. Bart van Vooren/Ramses A. Wessels, EU External Relations Law. Text, Cases and Materials, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 2014; Piet Eeckhout, EU External Relations Law, 2nd edition, Oxford: OUP 2011;

  • Specific literature on individual agreements (indicated via Blackboard).

Additional reading (CJEU case law etc.) will be indicated in the course reader and in the electronic learning environment, Blackboard.


Currently these pages are being updated to reflect the courses for 2019 - 2020. Until these pages are fixed as per 1 September no rights can be claimed from the information which is currently contained within.