The European Union is based on the rule of law. All EU action is based on treaties that have been adopted by all EU Member States in a voluntary and democratic manner. EU treaties are binding agreements between EU member states. These include founding treaties, amending and accession treaties, and protocols. The treaties set out the EU`s objectives, the rules for EU institutions, how decisions are taken and the relationship between the EU and its member states. All EU action is based on treaties. Under the treaties, EU institutions can pass legislation that member states implement. Article K.3 of the Maastricht Treaty, which came into force in 1993, allowed the European Communities to “develop conventions that they recommend to adopt to Member States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements” under the new “Justice and Home Affairs” pillar, organised on an intergovernmental basis. These provisions included the 1997 Naples II Convention on Customs Cooperation, the 1995 Convention on Simplified Extradition Procedures the 1995 Europol Convention establishing Europol the 1995 PFI Convention on Fraud, the 1995 Customs Information System Convention the 1995 Insolvency Convention The 1999 Convention on Extradition 6 the 1997 Anti-Corruption Convention the 1997 Service Agreement on the Meaning of Documents, the 1998 Convention on Marital Affairs the 1998 Convention on the Exclusion of Driver`s Licences and the Convention on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters of 2000.    Many protocols to these agreements have also been concluded.   With the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty in 2009, judicial policy has been integrated into the EC`s structures as an area of freedom, security and justice, replacing a number of these conventions with EU regulations or decisions. In recent history, these agreements have been signed within the framework of two EU policies: the Stabilisation and Association Process (SAp) and the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP).
The EU has trade agreements with these countries/regions, but both sides are now negotiating an update. The environmental effects for countries exporting agricultural products from wetlands or other environmental regions, for example Brazil, have been increasingly documented by environmental groups that oppose EU trade agreements.  In addition, other industries with significant environmental impacts, such as mining, are developing in areas with low regulatory burdens, such as South America and Asia. Inter-professional organisations have argued that increasing economic performance in these sectors will only strengthen standards in participating countries and that EU trade agreements should go hand in hand with efforts to harmonize environmental legislation.  The third part, on policies and actions, is subdivided, by domain, under the following title: Internal Market; the free movement of goods, including the customs union; agriculture and fishing; The free movement of people, services and capital; the area of freedom, justice and security, including cooperation between the police and the judiciary; Transport policy competition, taxation and harmonization of rules (note Articles 101 and 102); economic and monetary policy, including articles on the euro; Employment policy The European Social Fund; Policies on education, vocational training, youth and sport; Cultural policy Public Health Consumer protection trans-European networks; Industrial policy; economic, social and territorial cohesion (reducing development gaps); Space research and development and policy; Environmental policy Energy policy Tourism Civil protection and administrative cooperation.  Finally, several contracts were concluded between a sub-group of EU Member States due to a lack of unanimity.