Although North–South preferential trade agreements (PTAs) are expected to affect foreign direct investment (FDI), there is not much evidence to date on the impact of EU PTAs on the pattern of FDI. The aim of this study is to assess the impact of EU PTAs on the outward stocks of FDI of the EU. We estimate a model based on the knowledge-capital theory of the multinational enterprise over the period 1995–2005 using a sample of 173 host countries. Explanatory variables include measures of the level of bilateral protection and a dummy to capture the impact of deep integration provisions of PTAs. A dynamic panel model with fixed effects is used in order to take into account the dynamic behaviour of FDI and the heterogeneity bias. Results show that EU FDI is both horizontal and vertical. The level of EU protection affects FDI negatively, while the impact of the tariffs applied by host countries varies across groups of partner countries. Deep integration provisions affect EU FDI positively.