Brussels has published a new report assessing the implementation of the European Union’s existing trade agreements.
The report, which is the first of its kind, sheds light on what happens after trade agreements are negotiated and have entered into force.
According to a European Commission press release, the report’s publication is another step towards a fully transparent and inclusive trade policy, in line with the Commission’s commitments set out in the EU’s 2015 ‘Trade for All’ strategy.
“The success of EU trade policy is measured not only by striking new trade deals but also by ensuring that our existing agreements actually deliver,” said Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström.
“The report published today confirms that our trade agreements are a boost for the European economy: they have meant significant increases in exports, benefitting EU firms and their employees,” she added. “We are also on the right track when it comes to engaging concretely with our partners on labour and environmental standards. In addition, this report has valuable lessons about what we can do better when putting new agreements in place.”
The EU could for instance engage on issues such as freedom of association, violence against members of trade unions, child labour, labour inspections, collective bargaining, tripartite consultation, and health and safety at work, according to the report.
The report will be debated in the European Parliament. On November 10, Malmström will present the report to member state ministers.