Today the Hague Institute for Global Justice has published its report entitled The EU’s New Global Strategy: It’s Implementation in a Troubled International Environment, which represents a first appraisal of the strategy and discusses the way forward in its implementation. It takes into account the most recent developments, including the outcomes of the EU’s Foreign Affairs Councils of October and November 2016.
The report was funded by the European Commission and draws on two events hosted by The Hague Institute. On September 30, 2016, The Hague Institute and Europe House – the European Parliament Information Office and the Representation of the European Commission in The Netherlands – organized an event to analyze the EU’s new Global Strategy for Foreign and Security Policy entitled Shared Vision, Common Action: A Stronger Europe (EUGS), and to outline the next steps in terms of its implementation in a number of selected areas. The two-part event, consisting of a closed expert meeting and a public panel discussion, brought together diplomats, academics, and civil society practitioners.
The Global Strategy was presented to EU leaders on June 28, 2016 by High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini. It is the result of a year-long process during which High Representative Mogherini consulted with experts, member states, civil society, and other stakeholders. This process included an expert consultation in December 2015, organized by The Hague Institute and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to inform the Dutch input statement in the strategic review process.
The 2016 event, as well as the Dutch input statement from the event in December 2015, resulted in the report published today. The report is a first appraisal of the EUGS and consists of two sections – one looking back and one looking forward. First, it evaluates to which extent the suggestions coming out of the December 2015 expert meeting are reflected in the final document. Second, it discusses opportunities and challenges for the implementation of the EUGS, namely by exploring three areas of particular salience in EU foreign policy: the EU as a security actor; developing rules-based global governance in new areas; and the ‘joined-up’ approach in pursuing the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
With the Strategy now finalized, attention needs to turn to its further implementation in an environment mired by crises both within Europe and in the wider world. As an important step in this direction, an Implementation Plan on Security and Defence was presented by Ms Mogherini to EU’s foreign ministers on 14 November, 2016. The Global Strategy will remain the core guidance for EU external action for years to come. However, the period until the first yearly progress report in June 2017 will be crucial for establishing the traction and first concrete results produced by the Strategy.