In addition, more trade makes production more profitable thanks to specialization and economies of scale: not only producing fewer products of a given type, but also larger volumes for a global clientele reduces the share of fixed costs in the total cost. As the manufacturer can standardize and pre-manufacture parts and automate work processes, costs decrease while being of high quality. GATT – introduced in 1947 – has been for almost half a century the key element in regulating world trade. The objective of GATT was to significantly reduce tariffs and other barriers to trade and to protect and guarantee the free and full movement of trade between countries. Here you will find an overview of the free trade agreements concluded by the EU. The European Commission`s objective is to negotiate balanced and modern free trade agreements with important international markets and high-growth regions. The aim is to strengthen the competitiveness of the European economy and boost growth and jobs in Europe. In addition, EU Member States have signed a large number of investment agreements. They protect foreign investors from political risks such as discrimination and expropriation.
In the past, these agreements have generally been signed by two states (some of them are also plurilateral) and negotiated separately from trade agreements. With the Lisbon Treaty in 2009, the EU was tasked with negotiating such treaties for the EU as a whole and incorporated them into free trade agreements (e.g.B. with Canada). Subsequently, the Court of Justice of the European Communities clarified that investor-state arbitration procedures did not fall within the exclusive competence of the EU and that the corresponding agreements therefore had to be ratified by all Member States before their entry into force. In order not to overburden free trade agreements with lengthy ratification processes for investment protection chapters, the EU has started to separate, as far as possible, investment protection from free trade agreements. Singapore: The EU and Singapore signed a free trade agreement and an investment protection agreement at the ASEM Summit on 18-19 October 2018. The European Parliament approved both agreements in February 2019. Germany welcomes these agreements, as Singapore, despite its small size, is one of Germany`s main trading partners in the ASEAN region. The ratification of the free trade agreement was concluded by a Council decision on 8 November and the agreement entered into force on 21 November. The Agreement on Investment Protection has yet to be signed by all the Member States of the European Union. . .