External differentiated integration between the European Union and Turkey: a 'Ukraine Model for the Customs Union upgrade?

Altay S.

TURKISH STUDIES, 2021 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume:
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/14683849.2021.1944809
  • Journal Name: TURKISH STUDIES
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, IBZ Online, International Bibliography of Social Sciences, Historical Abstracts, Index Islamicus, MLA - Modern Language Association Database, Political Science Complete, Public Affairs Index, Sociological abstracts, Worldwide Political Science Abstracts
  • Keywords: Differentiated integration, European integration, Turkey-EU relations, customs union, Ukraine model, TRADE, EU, PARTNERSHIP
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The forthcoming Customs Union (CU) upgrade negotiations have the potential to stabilize and deepen the ties between the European Union (EU) and Turkey and bring them to a stronger form of external differentiated integration. This article examines the viability of an EU-Turkey Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (DCFTA), similar to that between Ukraine and the EU, as an alternative to the CU. The paper contends that a DCFTA would benefit both the EU and Turkey while it would de facto shift the contractual relations from accession conditionality to market access conditionality with potential political repercussions.