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Cover International Relations and the European Union

4. The Institutional Framework  

Sophie Vanhoonacker and Karolina Pomorska

This chapter focuses on the European Union (EU) as a ‘power’ on the world stage. The institutional context of the external relations of the EU is complex, it argues. The roles of various places, such as the Council, Commission, European Parliament (E), and the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) differ significantly depending on the policy area under consideration. The marked variations reflect the differing paths of evolution and the various degrees of integration these institutions have experienced in terms of different areas of external policy. This chapter focuses on the institutional basis of international policy in the EU. It asks how we should think about the roles of institutions and looks at some of the key ideas around EU international policy.