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The EU, Turkey, and the Arab Spring: Challenges and Opportunities for Regional Integration 6 novembre 2012

Posted by Acturca in EU / UE, Middle East / Moyen Orient, Turkey / Turquie, Turkey-EU / Turquie-UE.
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GTE Working Paper (Istituto Affari Internazionali) No. 1, 6 Nov 2012, 11 p.

by Kemal Kirişci *

Regional integration has long been seen as an effective tool for encouraging regional peace, stability, and prosperity, with the added expectation that economic growth may also facilitate transition to democracy. Working on these same assumptions, the EU and Turkey have developed different approaches to regional integration. The EU sought to develop institutional integration through the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership (EMP), the European Neighborhood Policy (ENP), and the subsequent Union for the Mediterranean (UfM), while Turkey — increasingly becoming a “trading state” — has multiplied and diversified its economic interactions with the Maghreb and Mashreq countries. The Arab Spring has led to a critical assessment of these practices. So what are the challenges and opportunities that regional integration faces in the wake of the Arab Spring?

* Kemal Kirişci is Professor in the Department of Political Science and International Relations at Boğaziçi University. The author would like to acknowledge the assistance of Barış İne from Boğaziçi University who helped to collect and process the statistical data used in this paper.

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