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Dynamics and dysfunctions of the Europeanisation process of arms transfers control regulations: an institutional perspective

Chiara Bonaiuti

The paper investigates the transpositions and impact of EU Directive 2009/43/EC (6 May 2009)- aiming to harmonize defence transfers licencing in the EU- on different national arms exports control legislations. The case studies (Italy, Hungary and the UK) will assess firstly the national transposition on the Directive, looking in particular at the key aspects of the Directive. Secondly, I focus on the Directive’s impact on national policies and institutions, investigating changes in balance between legislative and executive branch; between economic-industrial and political-strategic variables; in the degree of transparency; and in the reliability of EU arms importers. I argue that, if on the one hand the Europeanisation process triggered by the EU Commission has obtained results which seemed unachievable through intergovernmental modes, on the other it presents some limits and imbalances which also affect national policies. Being aware of these asymmetries is the first step in overcoming them. Academically I would like to test Scharpf’s theory on exit strategies to the “joint decision trap” on the unconventional defence field. This theory offers institutional tools to explain the dynamics, but also asymmetries and dysfunctions of the Europeanisation process triggered by supranational bodies. Overall, I would like to increase awareness of the direction of the Europeanisation process in the field of arms export control and transparency and to promote global coherence in the field.

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