Free Trade Agreements and Constitutional Rights: The Ecuadorian Case
This article discusses how Ecuador’s participation in negotiations of Free Trade Agreements (FTA) over the last decade has been shaped by two factors: the involvement of interest groups and other actors who have influenced policy-makers, and the entry into force of a new constitution establishing new principles for the national trade policy, which has a direct impact on trade negotiations. The article is divided into three parts. The first part provides a legal analysis of the terms and scope of the Ecuadorian Constitution of 2008 on trade agreements. The second part addresses the application of Constitutional Law in FTA-related matters by public authorities, specifically by the executive branch and the Constitutional Court. Finally, the third part reviews the role of civil society in shaping the content of FTAs and the negotiation process.