This work examines the role of the European Union as a distinct diplomatic actor. It focuses on the growing capacity of the EU to conduct external diplomatic relations with virtually every state and international organization. It explores the gradual institutional developments in the external competence of the EU and its ability to conduct consistent and coherent foreign policy and diplomacy. It argues that the initial strict separation between “high” and “low politics” foreign affairs resulted into substitution of political/diplomatic relations with economic relations and has significantly determined the contemporary character of European diplomacy. It also poses relevant questions arising from the major institutional novelties introduced by the Lisbon Treaty in the area of external representation, namely the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and the External Action Service based broadly on the Commission´s External Service.