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Title: A critical assessment of the European Union's economic policies towards the People's Republic of China : essays in political economics
Author: Wielpütz, Julien Frédéric
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2013
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The present thesis investigates European economic policies towards the People's Republic of China. In doing so, this work takes a political economics approach, incorporating political and institutional factors into the policy analysis. Particular attention is given towards how interest groups and EU member states influence economic policy outcomes at the European level. The results demonstrate the very political nature of European economic policies towards China, due less to the preeminence of political issues in the bilateral economic relationship than to the political struggles over policy outcomes. Advantaged by the European approach of promoting change through dialogue, European firms present in China have utilized their information advantage about the Chinese market conditions to exercise considerable influence over European policy, both in Brussels and within member states. Lacking viable access chaQnels, more protectionist interest groups and civil society have largely been shut out of the policy process. Besides interest-group influence, the position of member states is also determined by diverging normative preferences, which are not only the result of contemporary economic conditions but also of past policy traditions and institutional structures. In consequence, the resulting policy outcomes have significantly diverged from the results that could have been expected in a politically neutral policy environment and have subsequently often lacked focus and coherence. Although the limited relative economic linkages with China have so far relativized the importance of the country for European economic policy, further bilateral and international economic integration will continue to increase the importance of streamlining and refocusing European policy. And while the current situation is unsatisfactory, an improvement of the current status quo will not only require further Europeanization of formal competencies, but also the emergence of a well-defined European interest. However, this can only be achieved through a gradual process over time.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available