Negotiating European trade policy : industrial influence, diplomatic constraints and bureaucratic behaviour in the 1995 EU-Israel Association Agreement
This thesis explores the role of Government negotiations, industrial pressure and private interests in the development of European Union (EU) trade relations with Israel, focusing on the 1995 EU-Israel Association Agreement. Employing a two-level metaphor, it discusses the evolution of the EU's ability to negotiate and ratify trade agreements, the history of European-Israeli political and commercial relations, and Israel's political economy. This thesis posits that trade policy can be used to further ideological foreign-policy goals, but that the content of trade policy is ultimately shaped less by "high political" considerations than by developing linkages at the domestic levels. In evaluating the ability of commercial and scientific communities to sway the progress of the Association Agreement negotiations, this thesis finds that the existence of some types of links between Israel and EU member states allowed Israeli interests to gain domestic "allies" in Europe, and thus to secure additional trade concessions. A further consideration developed in this paper is the existence of at least two "domestic" arenas within the Community: at the transnational EU level, within the member states, and increasingly at the regional level. This thesis discusses the way in which both negotiators and private interests recognised these tensions and exploited traditional political relations at the national and occasionally the regional levels in order to further affect negotiation and ratification capabilities of the Community. The thesis thus argues for a more complex rendering of the traditional multi-level analytical model, which assumes a discrete "level one". Instead, it puts forward a multilevel model, in which the ability of domestic communities to constrain negotiators is applied not only to the Community's own procedures, but also to its sub-units.