In addition to the case studies on the EU`s strategic partnership with four Asian countries, the NEAR project team carried out a comparative study on EU perception in these four countries. Indeed, the perception of the EU observed in the FOUR strategic Asian partners of the EU can serve as an indicator to measure the effectiveness of EU policies. The article co-authored by Lai et al. (2019) attempted to verify perception studies conducted over the past ten years (2006-2015) in the FOUR strategic Asian partners of the EU in order to identify the evolution of the EU`s global player in the region, trends in perception changes and similarities and differences in perception of the EU between the four countries. The authors argue that there is a certain gap between the EU`s foreign policy expectations in the Asian region and the perception of the EU in the Asian mentality. On the basis of the widely held thesis that “Asian views on the EU and their future position in the world are a determining factor in the effectiveness of the EU`s strategy towards Asia,” the authors argued that the above shortcomings could indicate a negative development in EU-Asia bilateral relations in the future. The EU`s domestic political attention since the eurozone crisis and the Brexit decision are cited as an additional factor that weighs and highlights Asians` perception of the importance of their bilateral relations with the EU. However, the authors identified some encouraging signs in the perception of Asia, including the strategic partnership, which is increasingly seen as a trade relationship for the countries concerned and which has helped to expand bilateral relations beyond the traditional pillars of economic and political cooperation. The European Union also takes into account a nation`s influence on global issues when considering specific partnerships. That is why the members of the G8 and Outreach 5 have special partnership agreements with the EU. The specific nature of a bilateral partnership between the EU and a third country depends on specific factors such as the extent of common values. Hosoi Y (2019) Japan-EU relations after World War II and strategic partnership. Asia Eur J.
doi.org/10.1007/s10308-019-00555-1 EUNIC Korea is a network of national cultural institutes of EU member states in Korea; it aims to contribute to cultural diversity inside and outside the EU and to strengthen dialogue and cultural exchanges. The EUNIC cluster in Korea is part of a network of more than 90 EUNIC clusters on all continents. For more information, see korea.eunic-online.eu/?q=content/welcome-eunic-korea-0 EU Foreign Policy (2016b) 2010 EU-Korea Framework Agreement, 25. June 2016, eeaseuropaeu/korea_south/docs/framework_agreement_final_enpdf access to 5 October 2017 Although the EU`s Global Strategy 2016 (EEAS 2016) does not explicitly mention the importance of the strategic partnership, the NEAR project team firmly believes that the EU would inevitably use its network of strategic partners, particularly those based in Asia, if it needs assistance with the detailed design and implementation of the EAC initiative. Hix S, Jun H (2017) Can Britain reach a better trade deal with South Korea? That`s why it`s unlikely. LSE Brexit Blog, 7 February 2017, blogs.lse.ac.uk/brexit/2017/02/07/can-global-britain-forge-a-better-trade-deal-with-south-korea-this-is-why-its-unlikely/ access 23 March 2018 As part of its policy logic described in the previous section, the EU has so far engaged in strategic partnerships with 10 key partners – the UNITED States, Canada, Mexico and Brazil in North and South America; South Africa in Africa; Russia in Eurasia; China, Japan, India and Korea in Asia.