The Bilateral Relations of the Benelux Countries with Russia: Between Rhetorical Engagement and Competitive Business Interests

Casier, Tom (2011) The Bilateral Relations of the Benelux Countries with Russia: Between Rhetorical Engagement and Competitive Business Interests. Journal of Contemporary European Studies, 19 (2). pp. 237-248. ISSN 1478-2804. (The full text of this publication is not available from this repository)

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Official URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14782804.2011.580912

Abstract

This article explores the willingness of the Benelux countries to coordinate Russia related policies at EU level, contrasting their traditional pro-integrationist disposition and national economic interests. At rhetorical level all three states display a willingness to coordinate policies within the EU. In practice, however, this is dependent on the individual country’s economic interests, with energy being of particular importance in Dutch-Russian relations. There appears to be considerable inter-state competition in obtaining lucrative commercial contracts, undermining a coherent EU approach towards Russia. The traditional sources of influence of small states in the EU are limited in the case of the Benelux and Russia. With their traditional pro-integrationist attitudes having undergone substantial change, the Benelux states lack the leadership and the credibility to be seen as impartial brokers of a coalition for a coherent Russia strategy. Ad hoc coalitions on the basis of converging economic interests appear to be more determining for the coordination of Russia policies within the EU.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
J Political Science > JZ International relations
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations
Depositing User: Tom Casier
Date Deposited: 05 Sep 2011 16:00
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2011 11:15
Resource URI: http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/28118 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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