ACEA Competitiveness Award 2012: College of Europe graduate for thesis on EU-China trade policy

22 June 2012, Brussels The European Automobile Manufacturer’s Association (ACEA) has awarded its annual College of Europe thesis award to Isabel Mancuso, an International Relations and Diplomacy Master’s Degree candidate. Ms Mancuso’s thesis, entitled “Europa and the Dragon: the EU’s toolbox for providing access to Chinese markets”, was deemed to be the best College of Europe thesis on the subject of competitiveness.

Ms Mancuso’s thesis reflects the firm conviction that the EU needs to have a robust trade policy and a sustainable approach to industry and employment. It argues that the EU must “use multilateral and bilateral, as well as both formal and informal, instruments” in order to “eliminate trade barriers inChinaand to guarantee market access for European companies”.

Ms Mancuso’s work is topical in the context of the recent CARS21 Report on the Competitiveness and Sustainable Growth of the Automotive Industry in the EU, which focuses on improving the competitiveness of the auto industry in a global perspective. Mancuso concluded that the EU must be  “assertive and rigorous” in its trading relations with China and argues that  that “a more common, integrated stance vis-à-visChinais necessary. Member States must set aside their different positions and must realise that they have much more weight if they combine their strengths”.

The ACEA Annual Competitiveness Award, now in its seventh year, awards a College of Europe student for a thesis that shows academic excellence and investigates a dimension of EU regulation and industry competitiveness without necessarily being automotive-industry specific.

Ivan Hodac, ACEA Secretary General, applauded the work saying “this thesis demonstrates a clear understanding of the major issues at stake in EU trade policy, particularly in its appraisal that bi-lateral relations are only one of many possible tools for conducting trade negotiations”. The cooperation between ACEA and the College of Europe is rooted in the mutual conviction that close understanding is essential between industry, business, academia and the EU institutions, many of which recruit from the College of Europe.


About ACEA

  • The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) represents the 16 major Europe-based car, van, truck and bus makers: BMW Group, DAF Trucks, Daimler Truck, Ferrari, Ford of Europe, Honda Motor Europe, Hyundai Motor Europe, Iveco Group, Jaguar Land Rover, Mercedes-Benz, Renault Group, Stellantis, Toyota Motor Europe, Volkswagen Group, Volvo Cars, and Volvo Group.
  • Visit www.acea.auto for more information about ACEA, and follow us on www.twitter.com/ACEA_auto or www.linkedin.com/company/ACEA/.
  • Contact: Cara McLaughlin, Communications Director, cm@acea.auto, +32 485 88 66 47.

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About the EU automobile industry

  • 13 million Europeans work in the auto industry (directly and indirectly), accounting for 7% of all EU jobs.
  • 11.5% of EU manufacturing jobs – some 3.4 million – are in the automotive sector.
  • Motor vehicles are responsible for €374.6 billion of tax revenue for governments across key European markets.
  • The automobile industry generates a trade surplus of €79.5 billion for the EU.
  • The turnover generated by the auto industry represents more than 8% of the EU’s GDP.
  • Investing €58.8 billion in R&D annually, the automotive sector is Europe’s largest private contributor to innovation, accounting for 32% of total EU spending.
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