The EU has attempted to expand its norms and vision of non-proliferation to all members of the international community. However, EU Member States have totally divergent views on these matters. Reality is that nuclear non-proliferation is not an area in which the EU has acted to its full potential. The question that arises is whether third parties regard the European Union as an actor in the field of nuclear non-proliferation. In this context, we formulate the following hypothesis: the acceptance of the rules that the EU aims to expand in this policy field by third parties entails a positive performance with respect to its non-proliferation policy, and therefore their acceptance as a valid actor in this regime. To verify this hypothesis, we will proceed to conduct two case studies that provide practical evidence of the EU’s performance in this policy area: the negotiation of an agreed solution to the issue of Iran’s nuclear programme, and the development and deepening of bilateral relations between India and the EU in this policy area. Ultimately, this will enable us to ascertain the EU’s real ability to disseminate its rules on nuclear non-proliferation, whether or not the EU’s non-proliferation rules have been accepted, and to know to what extent the EU is conceived by other states as a valid player in this political sphere.
Keywords: EU, global actor, regional actor, Nuclear Non-Proliferation
Manuel Herrera | CEI-Iscte, Portugal
Manuel Herrera is a PhD student at King Juan Carlos University in Madrid, where he is writing his PhD thesis on EU non-proliferation policy. He holds a Master’s degree in International Security from the Institute of International Studies in Barcelona (IBEI), where he has done a final thesis on the role of the EU in Iranian nuclear negotiations. He was research assistant for the nuclear security programme at the Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies in New Delhi, India, where he carried out research on EU external action under the Iranian nuclear programme and on Indian nuclear strategy in the context of the Indo-Pakistani conflict. He has worked in the Office of Geopolitical Analysis of the Spanish Ministry of Defence, where he has supported the work of the Ministry through the regular preparation of analytical documents on the main international and geopolitical events affecting Spain, in particular issues related to non-proliferation and arms control. He was awarded a grant from the EU Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Consortium under the “Next Generation” programme to write a research report on the state and current situation of the Union’s nuclear non-proliferation policy, which was prepared at the International and Foreign Policy Institute (INCIPE) in Madrid. Finally, he was a guest researcher at the CIE-IUL between May and November 2020 He is currently a Non-Doctoral Integrated Researcher at CEI-IUL, as well as Associate Professor at the International Security and Defence Campus of the Universidad CEU de San Pablo de Sevilla.