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Thesis defended by Panagiotis Longinidis "European neighbourhood policy and the partners of eastern Europe" under the supervision of Joël Molinier (IRDEIC)
on the November 21, 2016
Thesis defended European neighbourhood policy and the partners of eastern Europe

Panagiotis Longinidis Thesis : European neighbourhood policy and the partners of eastern Europe

Abstract :

Οn the basis of the current political and legal debates, this doctoral research focuses on the interest of the European Union regarding the countries of Eastern Europe, emerged after the fall of the Soviet Union. Taking into account the fact that the relations of the Union with the neighboring countries which are located beyond its eastern borders don't constitute a new concept of the European external relations, these relations have undergone a revival of interest from 2004 onwards thanks to the enlargement of the Union eastwards and the emergence of the European Neighborhood and Partnership Instrument. The latter aims at managing the new geopolitical data in the region. The request for the intensification of the relations of the Union with its entourage and the progressive development of an arsenal of instruments have led the European Union into planning a neighborhood policy intended for the partner countries of Eastern Europe. Our thesis is based on a comprehensive approach to the evolution of the contractual relationships of the partner countries of Eastern Europe taking also into account the political side of the neighborhood policy. More specifically, we are interested in the aspect of the Union concerning the development of a particular policy intended only for the neighboring countries of Eastern Europe, which, in turn, is the outcome of contractual relations developed with the Soviet Union. After discussing the historical background of the bilateral relations between the Union and the border countries of the Europe in the Introduction, the first title of the thesis proposes a synthesis of the political motivation of the Union leading to the design of a specific policy for the eastern region of Europe and, subsequently, to the appearance of its first policy instruments. It focuses on the region of Eastern Europe which concentrates a variety of common characteristics and actions shared between partner countries are present allowing the structural and normative development of an eastern partnership. The second part addresses the question concerning the legal basis for the Neighborhood Policy under the primary law of ex-Communities and the Union within the financial framework as it is defined by the official documents of the Union. The appearance of the neighborhood policy in the Treaties of Amsterdam and Lisbon as well as its position in comparison with other external policies emerged in the primary law of the Union area also investigated. This section discusses the contractual relationships between the Union and the partner countries of Eastern Europe, from the period of the partnership and cooperation agreements concluded with the NIS, just after the dissolution of the USSR to the signing of the first three of the association agreements with the countries bordering to the east of the European Union.This evolution in the level of agreements could not operate without the development of the instrument of implementation of the neighborhood policy.The thesis conclusions broadly suggest the need to define the limits of the evolution of the neighborhood policy and its eastern dimension according to which the desire of a number of partners is oriented towards a potential accession to the Union. Thus, a historical and political interpretation of the neighborhood policy is proposed and it is divided into three phases: the years 2004-2006, the period of the ENPI 2007-2013 and the period of the ENI 2014-2020. Moreover, the conclusion of this thesis addresses the issue of deeper relationships with the neighboring countries of Eastern Europe without neglecting the geopolitical dangers caused not only by the other forces in the region but also by the indigenous problems of partner countries.

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Additional information

Jury :
  • M. Joël Molinier  Toulouse 1 Capitole University
  • M. Panagiotis Glavinis Université Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
  • M. Christian Hen Antilles-Guyane University
  • M. Olivier Blin  Toulouse 1 Capitole University

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