Armenia, Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia, Research, trade policy, Trade, economic integration and globalization

Contract for the Trade Sustainability Impact Assessment (Trade SIA) in support of negotiations of a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) between the European Union and the Republic of Armenia, which will be an integral part of the new Associatio

Project description:

The project assesses the potential impacts of proposed trade liberalisation on the EU, the trading partner country as well as other relevant countries and on all pillars of sustainable development in order to help optimise the decisions and choices made about policy.


General objectives:

The study aims to assess how the trade and trade-related provisions under negotiation could affect economic, social, and environmental issues in the EU and Armenia (as well as in other relevant countries, in particular neighbouring developing countries). Furthermore, the study proposes measures (trade or non-trade – the so-called ‘beyond the border’ dimension/issues) to maximise the benefits of the DCFTA and prevent or minimize potential negative impacts.
The assessment includes a reference to the EU-Turkey Customs Union and assesses the impact of the future DCFTA on the Customs Union's functioning. This assessment is necessary to enable the EU to pursue an approach which brings the greatest overall welfare gains, thereby helping the EU to meet its objective of promoting sustainable development.
The assessment also informes policy makers to allow them to set up the right accompanying policies at regional, territorial, national and EU level, so as to maintain and improve global competitiveness of industry and services and ensure support for the necessary labour market and social adjustments.
In addition to providing insights into expected impacts of the DCFTA and informing negotiators policy makers the study serves as a contribution to the Commission’s dialogue with stakeholders and trading partners.

Project structure and involvement of CASE:

Consortium approach is built on two complementary components or pillars of equal and mutually reinforcing importance:
Pillar 1: Economic, environmental and social assessments as such, using analytical tools, modelling techniques and rational causal chain analysis and undertaken in a clear, scientific and objective manner;
Pillar 2: A consultation process involving trading partners and stakeholders (both in the EU and the partner country) that provides genuine consultation and opportunities for information gathering and dissemination of results.

The analysis of overall trade sustainability impact is done in a sequence of logical steps, starting with a screening and scoping analysis, followed by CGE analysis and social, environmental and human rights analyses.

CASE's role in the project involves, but is not limited to:

  • Providing comments on the drafts of the Inception Report, the Technical Interim Report and the Final Report, specifically from a social and environmental perspective;
  • Overall social and environmental analyses (incl. environmental country profiles) for the EU and Armenia;
  • In-depth sectoral/horizontal issue analyses regarding the social and environmental impacts of the trade negotiations (including up to 2 small case studies and if needed some interviews with key stakeholders and/or civil society) for Armenia as well as a short write-up of the policy recommendations that follow from these analyses.
  • Participation in Steering Committee meetings in Brussels and workshop in Yerevan;
  • Making policy recommendations to mitigate negative and enhance positive impacts of the trade negotiations, with a focus on social and environmental issues.


Institute for International Development Economics (IIDE),
Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (WIIW)



EC DG Trade