The E3 format – the UK, France and Germany – has had prominence in international diplomacy since 2003. The grouping has played an important role in the negotiation process that resulted in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) intended to restrict the development of Iran’s nuclear programme.
The format has also played an important role in other events such as climate change negotiations, and in the relationship to North Korea, and the E3 has been suggested as a possible format for a European Security Council.
Even if this unformal foreign policy coordination has been remarkably solid, it has not yet evolved into a standing arrangement. The format was not activated during the Ukraine conflict, when France instead initiated the so-called Normandy Format that the UK is not a part of. Brexit has also created further insecurity on the UK’s future role in European foreign policy. The question, however, is whether the E3 format once again will play an important role in the time to come, or if Brexit in many ways was the final blow for the E3.
This is what Professor Richard G. Whitman will talk about when he visits NUPI on 24 February. He is the Director of the Global Europe Centre and Professor of Politics and International Relations at the University of Kent. He is also an Associate Fellow and former Head of the Europe Programme at the Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House). His current research interests include Brexit and especially the future foreign and security and defence policies of the UK and the EU.
This event is part of the NUPI seminar series Norway meets Europe and is moderated by Research Professor Pernille Rieker.
The seminar will be live streamed to NUPI's YouTube channel: