Foreign Ministries in the European Union: Integrating by Brian Hocking, David Spence

By Brian Hocking, David Spence

What position, if any, does the overseas ministry practice in modern international politics? Is the argument that it really is in a nation of terminal decline actual or rooted in just partial understandings of its altering personality? overseas Ministries within the eu Union explores this topic within the context of the ecu the place overseas ministry has performed a key function within the improvement of integration yet the place its function is more and more wondered. The participants learn the international ministry in thirteen member states and draw conclusions that problem a few traditional wisdoms.

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Central to the preparation of the CFSP and now the ESDP is the network of ‘European Correspondents’, based in national capitals and the Commission, and the CFSP or RELEX Counsellors. The European correspondents form the administrative interface between foreign ministries, the Council Secretariat and the appropriate Directorates General in the European Commission. They are responsible for the COREU cipher network, which exchanges in excess of 25,000 communications per year. The CFSP Counsellors working group, attended by officials based in the Permanent Representations in Brussels (and the Commission) supervise the legal and operational elements of the CFSP.

68 (Leicester: Centre for the Study of Diplomacy, 2000); J. Lewis, ‘Diplomacy in Europe’s polity: socialization and the EU Permanent Representatives’; paper presented at the International Studies Convention, Chicago, February 2001. For a practitioner’s view, see D. Bostock, ‘Coreper Revisited’, Journal of Common Market Studies, 40(2), June 2002. 31. M. Bruter, ‘Diplomacy without a state: the external delegations of the European Commission’, Journal of European Public Policy, 6(2), 1999; T. Bale, ‘The expectations–capability gap?

The production of CFSP and ESDP from Maastricht, through Amsterdam, the 2000 IGC and the Nice treaty has become their own ‘common policy enterprise’. At a rhetorical level, they say they believe that foreign policy remains the preserve of the nation-state, and that European coordination of foreign policy is beneficial to the EU so long as its development is based on identifiable national interests. But, privately, many admit to the belief that Europe will one day end up with a European diplomatic service, defending not national but European interests, which would then, by definition, amount to the same thing.

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