European Commercial Diplomacy: the hunt for growth

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Series Details No.138, October 2012
Publication Date 26/10/2012
ISSN 1989-2667
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The economic crisis has propelled commercial diplomacy into the fore. Whilst Russia and China have long been known to vigorously use their political weight to further economic enterprises, in the past couple of years both the European Union (EU) and the United States (US) have made their commitment to some form of economic statecraft explicit.

Nevertheless, differences remain. Whilst the EU focuses on commercial diplomacy as a means to achieve growth, the US speaks of economic statecraft as a means of retaining leadership and shaping the global political system. Europe’s myopic focus on economic growth leaves China, the rest of the BRICS countries and the US vying for the political influence necessary to shape the emerging multipolar world order. The question remains, should the flag follow trade or should trade bolster the flag?

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