Since the entry into force of the current Global Agreement in 2000, the European Union and Mexico have developed a political dialogue on issues of common interest such as social cohesion, justice and human rights, sustainable economic development, the environment, climate change, education and culture, as well as science and technology and, more recently, a deeper dialogue on multilateral affairs and a close collaboration in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The progressive consolidation of bilateral relations generated the need to strengthen ties and establish a more ambitious political framework between the parties. During the V Meeting of the Joint Council (held on April 19, 2007) both parties recognized that there had been a qualitative change in their bilateral relations. Later at the IV Mexico-EU Summit, held in Lima, Peru, in May 2008, the leaders of Mexico and the EU announced their intention to form a Strategic Association.
On July 15, 2008, the European Commission presented a communication to the Member States (European Council) and the European Parliament, recommending the establishment of a Strategic Partnership between the European Union and Mexico.
The Council endorsed the document on October 13, 2008 and the European Parliament gave its favorable opinion on March 12, 2009.
The Strategic Partnership
The Strategic Partnership is a political concept used to highlight the type of relationship that the EU aspires to maintain with third countries. The essence of the strategic partnership concept is that of a framework that reinforces the political will of the parties to intensify consultations and dialogue and, where appropriate, achieve closer cooperation.
In 2009, Mexico formally became a strategic partner of the European Union, a characteristic it shares with nine other countries: Brazil, Canada, China, the United States, India, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Russia and South Africa.
The Strategic Association aims at greater coordination on global, regional and bilateral issues, it is based on four axes:
Political aspects such as democracy, human rights, rule of law, cultural dialogue and regional integration;
- Security aspects such as the fight against terrorism, organized crime, drug trafficking and human trafficking;
- Environmental aspects such as climate change and natural catastrophes;
- Socio-economic aspects such as investment and social responsibility, innovation and intellectual property rights, open markets, food prices and maritime policy.
In order to link concrete actions to the Strategic Alliance and resume existing projects between Mexico and the EU, a Joint Executive Plan was negotiated to establish the set of actions that both parties would carry out within the framework of their Strategic Alliance.
The implementation of the commitments embodied in the Executive Plan has allowed the use of innovative mechanisms for political dialogue, such as sector dialogues.
With the Strategic Alliance and its Joint Executive Plan, bilateral dialogue on different issues of common interest has been strengthened.
With the achievement of the status of strategic partner of the European Union, Mexico was recognized as a major emerging power in Latin America, the second largest economy in the region and as a country with which the EU shares fundamental values.
Through the Strategic Association, Mexico and the EU have strengthened their coordination within the framework of multilateral institutions and forums on issues of global importance, especially peace, international security, construction, and respect for international law and climate change. In this context, Mexico supported the resolution that allowed the EU to obtain, in 2011, the status of observer in the UN General Assembly.
The message sent by the Strategic Association with the EU is clear: Mexico is a reliable partner with political weight on the international stage.
The Strategic Association has raised the quality and level of bilateral relations and has given new impetus to cooperation between Mexico and the European Union.