Understanding the EU’s changing trade policy strategy towards the Asia-Pacific region from a role-theory perspective

XINCHUCHU GAO, XUECHEN CHEN

Abstract


The past decade has witnessed an increasing nexus between the European Union’s trade and foreign
policy toward Asia. On the one hand, the EU has sought to deepen economic cooperation with its key
Asian partners since this region has become central to the EU’s economic growth. On the other hand,
the EU has increasingly used its trade policy as a foreign policy tool to pursue its geopolitical interests
in Asia. Against this background, the paper seeks to examine the dynamics of trade relations between
the EU and its Asian partners by adopting the role theory. Using this theory, this paper aims to provide
a holistic understanding of how the EU’s changing role in the EU-Asia trade relations has affected its
pursuit of economic as well as geopolitical interests in Asia.


Keywords


EU–Asia relations, EU trade policy, EU foreign policy, role theory

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.30722/anzjes.vol13.iss2.15601

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