Joint strategy

Source: Europa Nu.

This type of legally binding act is no longer used since the Treaty of Lisbon came into force December 2009. The joint strategy set out general guidelines for the common foreign and security policy. This would ensure unity and consistency in policies set out by the EU and its member states.

The joint strategy was replaced by the decisionĀ i in the Lisbon Treaty.


Joint strategy in detail

Area of application

A joint strategy was legally binding. Member states were allowed to take national action or issue national policies as long as these would remain within the guidelines set out by the joint strategy. Member states were allowed to abstain when deciding upon a joint strategy and gained greater freedom to pursue national actions and policies. However, these abstaining member states were not allowed to issue policies or take action that might impair or hinder a joint EU strategy.

Adopting joint actions

Joint strategies were decided upon by the European Council. When the Lisbon Treaty came into force joint actions were replaced by decisions. These are decided upon by the Council of Ministers.


Legal framework

Technically, the joint strategy is obsolete since December first 2009. In its current incarnation it is based on the Treaty on European Union (TEU) and the Treaty on the functioning of the European Union (TfEU).

  • description: TEU title V chapter 2 section 1 art. 28
  • instrument (decision): part six TfEU title 1 chapter 2 section 1 art. 288


Further information