Strengthening the EU’s autonomy – Commission seeks input on a new anti-coercion instrument

Today, the European Commission launched a 12-week public consultation to seek input from businesses, organisations and individuals in shaping a new legal instrument to deter and counteract coercive practices by non-EU countries. This instrument would empower the Commission to apply trade, investment or other restrictions towards any non-EU country unduly interfering in the policy choices of the EU or its Member States. Executive Vice-President and Commissioner for Trade, Valdis Dombrovskis, said: “As part of our new EU trade policy approach, we have committed to being more assertive in defending our interests. The new anti-coercion instrument could be a critically important part of this approach. It could give us a strong autonomous tool to take action when our partners do not play by the rules. We strongly encourage stakeholders, in the EU and outside, to share their views on coercive practices and how best to tackle them. We need to strengthen the EU’s resilience, protect our economic interests, and enhance our legitimate rights to impose countermeasures, where necessary. This is what the initiative stands for and we look forward to receiving a wide range of contributions.” More information is available here.