Dramas of statecraft, mistrust and the politics of non-membership
in Diplomacy and lobbying during Turkey’s Europeanisation
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Chapter 5 discusses the role of lobbying in making and unmaking EU–Turkey economic integration within the framework of European Commission. Drawing on the EU–Turkey customs union, free trade agreement on steel and other technical and sectoral meetings between Commission bureaucrats and their Turkish counterparts, it focuses on transnational encounters between bureaucrats, diplomats and lobbyists and their symbolic dimension at several significant moments of the deepening of economic integration between the EU and Turkey. Turkey, though, has turned towards protectionism to manage the political and economic costs associated with its EU accession and to satisfy key business interests from both sides to protect their market access in the face of the receding reality of accession. This chapter argues that Turkish elites try to compensate for such losses by means of dramatic expressions of state power, but end up accentuating actors’ differences in cultures of negotiation, producing mistrust and wariness between actors and alienating them from one another.

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