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To what extent does the resolution of the 2005 so-called “Bra War” contribute to a better understanding of the Union’s trade negotiation agenda?

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  1. The bilateral EU/China Shanghai Agreement
  2. The modeling of the negotiation context
  3. EURATEX and the FTA

This study does not aim at weighing the pros and the cons of EU's way of dealing with the impending Chinese textiles competition, nor does it try to assess European Member States' (MSs) ability to reach consensus during trade negotiation rounds. Building on Robert Putnam's heuristic ?Two-level Game? (TLG) ; this study rather questions to what extent the resolution of the 2005 so-called ?Bra War? contributes to a better understanding of the Union's trade negotiation agenda.

The 10 June 2005 bilateral EU/China ?Shanghai Agreement ? (SA) was a European response to two related factors: China's 2001 accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the impending ending of the WTO Agreement on Textiles and Clothing (ATC) .

As of 2005, not only should have China's textiles no longer be submitted to ATC quotas when entering the EU market, but what is more, they should have been logically included in the Union's Generalized System of Preferences' regime.

Negotiated within the 1985 China/EU Agreement framework , the SA reflected some MS worries about potential surges of Chinese textile exports to the EU, as well as their related willingness to curb those exports by arranging another EU-specific transition period between the end of the ATC regime and the forthcoming liberalization of the European market to Chinese textiles .

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