On 25 January 2018, the Department of EU International Relations and Diplomacy Studies at the College of Europe, Bruges campus, in collaboration and with the support of the Swiss Mission to the EU, held a conference to discuss the European Union’s relations with its neighbours from an institutional perspective.
The EU’s neighbouring countries have to varying extents become more deeply integrated with the internal market. They have also developed—or are developing—a certain degree of institutionalisation of their relationship with the EU. These ‘privileged partnerships’ have taken different forms, ranging from bilateral and rather static models to multilateral and dynamic models. Despite their differences, they face similar institutional challenges. As the Brexit debate shows, fully benefitting from the internal market while at the same time retaining full sovereignty comes close to squaring the circle. The conference attempted to draw the major institutional lessons from the different types of neighbourhood relations.
21 November 2017: Panel debate "Voluntary Return Policy as a Tool for Migration Management: Exchange of Best Practices"
23 November 2017: Workshop "The Swiss Experience with EU Market Access: Lessons for Brexit"
19 March 2018 : Roundtable "Foresight on Differentiated Integration: Academic and Think Tank Practitioners’ Debate"
Contact: Sabine DEKEYSER