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Consultations | Brussels, 28 April 2020

Study on the European Commission trade department’s Civil Society Dialogue

The European Commission’s trade department (DG Trade) is reviewing its Civil Society Dialogue process.

The study aims to:

  • Assess whether the Civil Society Dialogue (CSD) strategy and purposes remain adequate.
  • Analyse how the CSD in its current format feeds into debates in Member States and vice-versa. The study will comprehensively map consultation mechanisms per Member State. It will identify gaps where Commission action could add value and contribute to national dialogues on international trade in a more structured manner. The study will identify priority countries and intervention areas, recommending how to improve DG Trade's outreach in the EU.

The main tasks will include:

  • Assessing the current CSD strategy.
  • Analysing how the CSD interacts with the trade debate in Member States.
  • Assessing developments in Member States, conducting deeper analysis in 12 Member States and a case study.

The study will run for nine months.

To implement the study, the contractor will consult various interlocutors, including CSD/contact group representatives, Member State permanent representations and authorities, the Secretariat of the European Parliament's Committee on International Trade (INTA), Commission representation offices, civil society organisations in Member States, DG Trade staff and others.

The study will give DG Trade feedback on what the EU is doing right and offer guidance on how to improve the process. It will also help DG Trade to further improve transparency and stakeholder involvement at all levels.