EU - what's next?


Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Guest on Tue Mar 20, 2018 3:11 pm

srednja evropa, fino, znaci welcome vojvodina, bye bye srbija

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by KinderLad on Tue Mar 20, 2018 3:14 pm

xie saike wrote:srednja evropa, fino, znaci welcome vojvodina, bye bye srbija

Mislim da u njegove ideje ulazi ne samo Srbija, nego i Bugarska. Bosna sigurno.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Tue Mar 20, 2018 9:27 pm

Samo živo i dinamično

The New Dutch Disease Is White Nationalism
An upstart far-right party in the Netherlands threatens to
entrench xenophobia in one of Europe’s most progressive

As voters in the Netherlands gear up for local elections, to be
held across the country on March 21, the old adage that all
politics are local is being turned on its head. For the Dutch, the
opposite is equally true: Local politics are national. Since all cities and
towns vote on the same day, prominent national politicians intrude,
elevating mundane local elections that used to center on debates about
bicycle paths and garbage collection into a national spectacle.
After last year’s nasty campaign that involved sitting Prime Minister
Mark Rutte arguing that his rival Geert Wilders, the leader of the
nativist Party for Freedom (PVV), would plunge the Netherlands into
chaos and Wilders countering that not a single Dutch citizen believed
Rutte anymore, the incumbent Rutte defeated Wilders in the March
2017 national election. The results were welcomed by European leaders
such as Angela Merkel as a “good day for democracy.” But, as more
critical observers have noted, Rutte’s win wasn’t a definitive victory for
sensible centrism; indeed, he managed to triumph over the Dutch farright
by moving consistently further to the right himself — by dog
whistling to anti-immigration voters and adopting positions similar to
Wilders’s own.

If the biggest electoral headline from the Netherlands a year ago was
Rutte’s success in fending off a challenge from Wilders, the less
trumpeted but equally noteworthy news was the success of a new
player in town — the self-styled far-right intellectual-turned-politician
Thierry Baudet. Presenting himself to his audience on at least one
occasion draped over a grand piano, Baudet, who is 35, combines a
sentimental attachment to European high culture with the spirit of an
online culture warrior. He has expressed support for Donald Trump
and Vladimir Putin, both of whom he views as strong leaders. He has
also cast doubt on investigations showing that Russia was responsible
for the 2014 downing of a Malaysia Airlines jet over Ukraine that killed
nearly 200 Dutch citizens.

With a talent for manufactured outrage and victimhood, Baudet
exemplifies the politics of the 21st century.

Last year, banking on the irresistibility of his persona to
journalists, Baudet’s Forum for Democracy (FvD), a think tank
reconfigured as a political party, entered parliament with two
out of 150 seats — a modest but remarkable result for a party
that didn’t exist in the previous election.
Since then, Baudet has
captivated the Dutch in the same way that Wilders benefited
from the media’s obsessive attention to his every move since he
founded his own party in 2006.

Baudet’s two-man party has, in recent polls, tied or even overtaken
Wilders’s PVV, drawing voters from among Wilders’s supporters as well
as Rutte’s center-right People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy
The local elections will be the first big test for Baudet and the
FvD, which is fielding candidates in the Netherlands’ two largest cities,
Amsterdam and Rotterdam.

The predictions look promising for the FvD. If the polls are correct,
Baudet will achieve something that Wilders has never managed nor
attempted — to secure a foothold in Amsterdam’s city council.
Amsterdam is known to have a political culture and electorate that are
predominantly leftist, the PVV simply never bothered fielding
candidates there, fearing that it would not win any seats and might be
humiliated. However, the FvD may win as many as four seats in a city
that has long thought of itself as the “Republic of Amsterdam,” bucking
the racist and nativist sentiments that have swept the rest of the
country — much like the Californian cities that have defiantly resisted
Trump’s policies.

Many Dutch politicians and journalists have long hoped that once
Wilders ran out of steam, the problem of nativist populism would fade
from the scene. Baudet, however, plays a long game. He is building an
ideology for the 21st century that seeks to re-establish the nation-state
in the form that 19th-century Europeans imagined for it while
simultaneously ridding the political space of both internal and external
enemies. Liberated from European bureaucrats, Muslim immigrants,
and feminists alike, it is the culture war of the American alt-right
cloaked in the garb of European intellectual history.
In this sense, the rise of the FvD marks a decisive shift.

Baudet’s FvD is different from Wilders’s PVV in several ways. First,
there is a distinct difference in style. The PVV has long been
characterized as populist, and it depends on leeching off and
perpetuating popular frustration to win votes. Though the PVV has
been consistent in the harshly Islamophobic content of its rhetoric, its
ideological grounding always seemed hodgepodge at best, oscillating
between the paranoid style of its chief ideologue, Martin Bosma (a
Dutch David Horowitz of sorts), and naked opportunism.

In contrast, the FvD likes to think of itself as a party that has a solid
intellectual grounding. (It was recently announced that Paul Cliteur, a
well-known professor at Leiden University, will head the party’s
“scientific institute.”) Long before entering politics, Baudet donned the
cloak of the public intellectual, penning polemics on topics including
modern art and the European Union, often repeating on loop that it
was all connected to oikophobia.
Baudet defines this term, taken from
the conservative British philosopher Roger Scruton, as a “pathological
aversion” to the national home. Oikophobia, he insists, is destroying
the nation-state through its concerted support for feminism, cultural
Marxism, modern art, immigration, the European Union, and whatever
else can be cast as the vague yet menacing bogeyman of the paranoid

This focus on an omnipresent and all-encompassing threat is the
second shift from Wilders’s immigration-centric form of politics.
two men have a past working relationship, and Baudet has advised PVV
politicians behind the scenes. However, when it comes to ideology,
Baudet casts a far wider net. The hallmark of Wilders’s platform is a
mix of nationalist kitsch and calculated cruelty toward the country’s
Muslim population and immigrants, couched in the language of civil
war. Wilders offers Dutch voters a form of politics based on persecution
and perpetual resentment of immigrants and minorities. And while his
rhetoric has escalated to even more rabid extremes in response to the
electoral threat Baudet represents, there is also something impotent
about it. Baudet, though equally obsessed with Islam, is reinventing the
nativist platform in a way that anyone familiar with the American altright
will instantly recognize; it is a political brand built around an
imagined assault on ethnically white people and their culture — and
the need to fight back. Significantly, Baudet is also popular among a
sizable section of the younger generation — much more so than
Wilders ever was.

Finally, Baudet represents a break with recent Dutch political culture.
In many ways, he seems to channel the legacy of Pim Fortuyn, the
iconic populist politician murdered in 2002. Fortuyn carried the torch
of the Dutch tradition of anti-clericalism. In the 20th century, anticlericalists
targeted the church’s influence on Dutch society; it was only
logical that this tradition of extreme secularism would set its sights on
Islam next. And while Baudet seems to play a role very similar to
Fortuyn — that of the dandy intellectual, able to upset and fluster his
opponents with a flurry of theatrics and eloquence — his ideology
represents the next chapter in the ever-escalating nativist resentment
that has the Netherlands in its grip.

Where Wilders introduced a religious crusader’s fanaticism to the
debate about Islam, Baudet is casting himself as the country’s lone
defender of Western culture and as a champion of white people in

Even before entering politics, Baudet spoke of wanting to ensure
that Europe remained “predominantly white and culturally as it
is.” Last year, he claimed that Dutch society was being “diluted
homeopathically” by an influx of refugees and migrants. He
attributed the fall of the Roman Empire to mass migration
myth long since debunked by scholars but popular on the farright),
explaining that the marble busts of Roman emperors in
museums “look like us” but that modern-day Italians clearly
look very different. In other words, immigration and ethnic
mixing are the harbinger of political decay.

Baudet has suggested that the West suffers from an “autoimmune
disease,” turning the body politic against itself and that “malicious,
aggressive elements are being introduced in unheard numbers into our
societal body.” He defended a mob smashing windows and threatening
politicians at a local town hall meeting about taking in refugees as an
“act of self-defense” against an “injection of criminality.”

Baudet consistently uses rhetoric that conjures the people as an organic
being, poisoned by both external and internal enemies — language that
clearly resembles that of fascist intellectuals in the early 20th century
who were obsessed with the ethnic hygiene of their society. It is worth
recalling that after the fascist intellectuals came the politicians who
decided that this language needed to be matched by policy.

Most of the time, Baudet chooses his words carefully. In the speech to
launch his political party, he called for the restoration and protection of
“Boreal Europe.” To most listeners, the term seemed archaic and
quaint. Boreal Europe stems from the myth that Europeans are of
Aryan and polar descent and is used to envision an ethnically white
space north of the line from Gibraltar to Vladivostok.

But the term also has a clear political lineage. It appeared on the
margins of French intellectual life right after World War II and was
popularized from the 1980s onward by the French ethno-nationalist
Jean-Marie Le Pen, the founder of the National Front and father of its
current leader, Marine Le Pen. Apart from his French inspirations,
Baudet is cozy with American thinkers of the racist right: A few months
ago, he sat down for a long dinner with Jared Taylor, the selfproclaimed
race realist and proponent of scientific racism.

Whenever Baudet is called out, he is quick to play innocent — but he
never quite convinces. Two weeks ago, one of his party’s top candidates
in Amsterdam stepped down after having repeatedly suggested that
black people simply have a lower IQ than white people and arguing that
same-sex marriage had rendered society less intelligent (the claim
being that gay people are smarter than straight people and that the
marriages they used to settle for at least produced smart babies).
Pressed for comment, Baudet made contradictory statements, refused
to disavow his candidate, and insisted that differing IQ scores among
different races were simply a matter of scientific fact.

In the Netherlands, vulgar racism is widely considered unacceptable.
But Baudet’s brand of matter-of-fact racism, which consists of claims
about the natural differences among entire ethnic or racial
populations, often derived from bad science and discredited theories, is
on the rise.

Add that to the idea that white Europe is moribund due to the
twin assaults of migration and cultural self-loathing and you
end up with a dangerous mix — an ideologically coherent

More troubling is the fact that this worldview is gaining mainstream
legitimacy. Several Dutch media outlets ran articles and reports on
Baudet’s claims about IQ as if they were a legitimate academic debate.
Indeed, the FvD is spearheading a culture war that targets a population
that has in recent years been receptive to the aggressive political
proselytizing of Wilders. For such voters, Baudet’s party represents the
logical next step.

In the early 2000s, the Netherlands was one of the first countries, along
with Austria, to experience the rise of anti-establishment populism.
Now, as the country witnesses the umpteenth wave of further
radicalization, it is once again becoming the bellwether of Europe.
Local elections may seem insignificant, but they are now the primary
battleground where openly racist politics and politicians, cloaked in
eloquence and intellectual pretension, are establishing electoral
footholds and hijacking Dutch political debate. Those concerned about
the re-emergence of ethnic nationalism and white supremacist politics
in Europe should pay attention. Thierry Baudet’s rise to national
prominence signals more darkness to come.

Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Guest on Fri Mar 23, 2018 4:02 pm

u cemu su slicni gradonacelnica madrida i gradonacelnik tzv metropole srbije

u voznji metroom ne, jer bg nema metro, a i da ima ovo govno bi bilo u zatamnjenom audiju.

spanija je na nogama jer je gradonacelnica izgleda falsifikovala deo master rada, i to u samo par referenci. u srbiji vecina zivi lazirane zivote pa to nije big dil.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Filipenko on Sat Mar 24, 2018 1:07 am

Drogirani majmun na celu Slovacke

Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Guest on Sat Mar 24, 2018 1:40 am

Летећи Полип

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Летећи Полип on Mon Mar 26, 2018 11:04 pm

ROME (Reuters) - The head of Italy's far-right League said on Monday he was ready to talk to the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement about forming a government after the two sides joined forces to elect parliamentary speakers at the weekend.

Saturday's vote, which saw a 5-Star politician take charge of the lower chamber while a center-right veteran became head of the upper house Senate, raised speculation the two blocs might move on and try to forge a coalition.
Such a prospect looked near impossible a month ago, with the League and its conservative allies deeply opposed to the 5-Star both in terms of policies and personalities.

However, after a March 4 national election ended in a hung parliament, Italy's disparate parties are considering various options to overcome the impasse as President Sergio Mattarella prepares to start formal negotiations next week.

"We need to sit around a table with everyone, and certainly also with 5-Star," League leader Matteo Salvini told Il Messaggero newspaper in an interview.

In an interview with Telelombardia, Salvini said he would put forward 10 priorities for the next government, including reforming the justice system, curbing immigration and dumping a recent pension reform that had pushed back retirement ages.

He made no mention of introducing a flat tax - a campaign pledge that would cost billions of euros to implement and is seen as incompatible with an expensive, flagship 5-Star proposal to instigate a "citizens' wage" to help the poor and jobless.

Luigi Di Maio, leader of the 5-Star, laid out his own policy priorities on Sunday, highlighting the need to undo the recent pension changes and reduce youth unemployment. He made no reference to the citizens' wage.

Sending another mollifying signal, Salvini said he was ready to drop his claim to be the next prime minister, even though the League emerged as the largest party within the conservative alliance, which in turn is now the largest bloc in parliament.

"It is not 'Salvini or death'," he told Telelombardia.

The 5-Star and League have enough seats to govern alone - a prospect that has worried financial markets because of their shared hostility to European Union budget restraints and their big campaign spending pledges.


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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Wed Apr 04, 2018 9:22 pm

Welcome to Austria: The neoliberal nationalism of Kurz & Co.
   Raphaela Tiefenbacher
4 April 2018

Social cuts and a nationalist reorientation of cultural policy have been the major trademarks of Austria’s new rightwing government in its first 100 days. Despite the demonstrative show of unity, cracks in the coalition are already showing, reports Raphaela Tiefenbacher.

The motto of the new government in Vienna is ‘Austria first!’ Although the country’s export economy means that Trump-style trade wars are not an option, rose-tinted nationalism is another matter. Meanwhile, the Freedom Party (FPÖ) led by vice-chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache clings desperately to its image as champion of the ordinary man, and the People’s Party (ÖVP) under chancellor Sebastian Kurz does its best impression of unflappable reasonableness and conservative gravitas.

Both parties, however, are finding it increasingly difficult to sustain their political brand identities. Escalating hostility from the FPÖ towards neutral political institutions like the public service broadcaster ORF makes the ÖVP’s silence look more like shock than objectivity. Nor does the thoroughly neoliberal economic policy of the ÖVP do the FPÖ any favours either. Over the last two decades, the latter has managed to market itself as the party of the national welfare state, and in last year’s elections got 60 per cent of the working-class vote. Many will now be expecting their lives to improve and their problems to be made visible.

The rightwing nationalists now have to square the circle: to hold onto their voters while consistently acting against their voters’ interests. This they do using the time-honoured nationalist bait: Heimat (home). Solidarity in the sense of redistribution, risk-sharing and social responsibility is replaced by a folksy feeling of belonging.

At the same time, the coalition has wasted no time in making welfare cuts while lowering taxes for the top-third income bracket. The first thing the government did on taking office was to abolish a measure for supporting older unemployed people. The economic upturn, so they argue, makes the project simply a waste of money. Yet older job seekers are especially affected by systematic discrimination on the labour market, regardless of the overall state of the economy, something that often leads to long-term unemployment. In addition, the government is planning to cut the budget for the publicly-run employment service, which is also responsible for unemployment benefits, by a phenomenal 30 per cent. The fallout is likely to cost Austria’s well-developed social welfare system a lot of money.

The coalition has responded to this risk by announcing that it will do away with so-called emergency benefits. These serve as a stop-gap between unemployment benefits and basic welfare benefits and allow people to claim in emergencies without having to turn over their assets to the state. Cutting emergency benefits would be equivalent to introducing Hartz IV – Germany’s punitive benefits system for the long-term unemployed – with one major difference: the limit beyond which the authorities can seize the property of the claimant would be much lower.

Finally, the government is planning to raise the legal number of daily working hours from eight to twelve. This would reduce overtime bonuses, lowering salaries significantly. In March, the ÖVP minister for the economy said that job seekers could reasonably be expected to accept work requiring a commute of up to two-and-a-half hours, particularly since social life and personal relationships anyway happen online these days. The people that these measures will primarily affect are male, Austrian and over fifty – in other words, typical FPÖ voters.

Nationalist nostalgia and residual Nazism

In order to pre-empt social protest, the far-right is increasingly using the nostalgic concept of Heimat. Indeed, they have been claiming the concept for decades. It is usually defined in relation to ‘foreigners’ or ‘the foreign’ – be it the Orient, Islam or urban modernity. Heimat thereby becomes central to a feeling of community that those at the bottom end of the socio-economic scale gratefully accept as a form of ideological compensation.

The FPÖ party manifesto describes the present as a ‘time of identity annihilation and the alienation of peoples from their roots’ and calls for a ‘strengthening of cultural identity’ through preservation of regional customs. Alongside these methods of popular appeasement, the far-right is also busy providing members of student fraternities (Burschenschaften), the seedbeds of the FPÖ’s cadres, with official posts. Seventeen of its fifty-one MPs belong to a fraternity or sorority; in the ministries controlled by the FPÖ, the picture is much the same.

A number of these fraternities have recently come under public scrutiny. One of them, the ‘Germania’, is facing charges of Nazi-revivalism brought by the FPÖ-controlled interior ministry, albeit unwillingly, after it emerged that the fraternity had been using song books containing Nazi references. One song contained the line: ‘Turn on the gas, you ancient Germans, we can finish off the seventh million.’

At that point, the moral red line which Sebastian Kurz had defined as being equivalent to the limits of the law had also been crossed for the majority of the ÖVP. When the scandal broke, the FPÖ reacted by standing behind its candidate for the regional elections in Lower Austria, who happened to be the vice president of the Germania fraternity. However, after pressure from the Austrian president and senior ÖVP politicians, it reluctantly distanced itself from him.

Is that art or can we get rid of it?

The ÖVP have also been using the far-right’s concept of Heimat and its cultural correlates. The collaboration between the two parties is reflected particularly clearly in the coalition’s cultural policy, the culmination of the demonstrative harmony between the centre and far right.

The government’s programme distinguishes between high and popular culture, understanding the first in terms of tourism, Mozart balls and the Salzburg Festival, the second in terms of local customs as a source of rightwing identity politics. The coalition particularly emphasizes the ‘productive interaction’ of the two sectors. The introduction by the ÖVP-controlled culture ministry of an ‘Austria quota’ in arts funding, together with increased support for regional culture, is clearly a condition imposed on it by the FPÖ.

A conservative ÖVP accent is nevertheless audible in a passage declaring that art should no longer be an end in itself. The watering-can principle, which in the past ensured a broad distribution of funds, must now give way to a ‘clear orientation towards results’. Financial support from the state will from now on serve ‘as a springboard for financial independence’. What survives will be what is marketable. Artistic freedom will be based on demand. This dependency on the commercial mainstream is likely to harm precisely those projects with a critical intention.

This political strategy was formulated particularly clearly by the top FPÖ candidate in Tyrol: ‘Ideological art like feminist or queer art should stop receiving funding and instead have to survive on the “open market”. On the other hand, the cultivation of tradition and Heimat, as well as folk culture and folk art of all kinds, should be funded more.’

The feminist art scene has not shied from criticizing the current situation in Austria. The feminist sorority ‘Hysteria’ put so much pressure on the organizers of the FPÖ’s ‘Academics Ball’ that this year they used facial recognition software to filter out undesirables. The year before, the feminists had mingled with the rightwing public, unfurling a large banner with the provocative slogan ‘society for the protection of males’ and successfully getting into all the papers.

Opposition coalesced in 2017 in Lower Austria, where the existing ÖVP-FPÖ government announced that it would be cutting the budget for independent cultural initiatives by a third. The argument was that the current economic upturn would soften independent art’s transition to the open market. The conservatives make no secret of their zero-deficit fantasies: low expenditure is paramount even when the economy is healthy. A strong state is not afraid of the market. Only the regional museum and the music schools were spared. This prompted a sharp response from the cultural sector. A broad alliance between art and civil society succeed in attracting media attention through various protest actions and a petition collecting over 17,000 signatures. Finding itself under significant pressure, the regional government finally reduced the budget cuts to ten per cent.

How long can the affair last?

The ‘coordinated’ funding strategy for the arts promised by the new government exemplifies its attempt to combine economically profitable commerce with politically profitable national culture. The governing parties seem to have grasped that neoliberalism and nationalism form a perfect match. The public show of harmony between ÖVP and FPÖ conceals the radical departure from the welfare-state model of the social democratic chancellor Bruno Kreisky, the Austrian chancellor from 1970 to 1983.

Yet not all is lost. Both coalition partners are faced with major challenges. Kurz must impose his will on the powerful regional governors and overcome widespread liberal-conservative distaste at the FPÖ’s Nazi ‘slip-ups’. Strache, too, is increasingly alienating his supporters. One the one hand, he unites bona fide rightwing extremists, who bitterly resent being forced to renounce Nazi ideology. On the other hand, those at the bottom of society are realizing more and more that the FPÖ is acting against their interests. According to a recent survey, two-thirds of the population do not expect their situation to improve with the new government.

While the arts sector has the resources to mobilize broad public opinion, and is therefore well armed against political attack, the traditional mouthpiece of less affluent Austrians is coming under increasing pressure. The Chamber of Labour, the body representing workers and employees anchored in the constitution, has long been the favourite whipping boy of the right. However, in addition to the routine verbal attacks, the chamber is now being threatened with financial restrictions. In response, it has loudly criticized the plans for social cuts and, together with the Trade Union Federation, is getting ready for industrial action. In parallel, a small group of indignant Christian socialists is forming under the head of the Caritas organization, Michael Landau, who openly criticizes the fact that the government is ‘forgetting the poorest’.

The growing protests give reason to hope that the Germano-nationalist nostalgia of the ÖVP and the FPÖ cannot distract from their drastic programme of austerity for much longer. However, it can only be prevented if there is solidarity across the entire opposition – both in and outside parliament – and if this also extends to those who have let themselves be blinded by rightwing identity politics. They must recognize that blood and soil is no substitute for a politics of solidarity.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Fri Apr 06, 2018 1:49 pm

France plots new European military crisis force outside EU
John Irish, Andrea Shalal

4 Min Read

PARIS/BERLIN (Reuters) - The French government will in June launch a deployable European military crisis force outside of existing European Union efforts, French Defence Ministry sources said on Wednesday.

Paris has been in touch with a dozen countries, including Germany, the Netherlands, Britain and Denmark, about the initiative, holding a working group to outline the idea in March.

The idea aims to bring together European countries with a military capacity and political desire to collaborate on planning, carry out joint analyses of emerging crises and to react to them quickly.

It would not be within the European Union and would allow countries outside it, like Britain, to be part of it,” said one source.

French President Emmanuel Macron broadly outlined the idea to have a rapid European intervention force by the end of the decade during a landmark speech on Europe last September.

While some EU tactical interventional groups exist in principle, so far they have never been used.

The sources declined to name the countries that would be at a launch ceremony in Paris in June, but said it did not mean countries could not join it a later stage.

Germany, which has a historical resistance to military missions that included the use of force, in March appeared to back the plan given the need for a better European cooperation to crises.

However, it has previously emphasised the force should be folded into the new Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) defence pact being set up between EU governments. French officials insist the new initiative will not cannibalise PESCO.

French Defence Minister Florence Parly will discuss the project with her German counterpart Ursula von der Leyen on Thursday in Paris.

“It’s creating a smaller group of countries that have common analysis and procedures,” s
aid a second French defence source. “It would plug in the different military planning and operations centres,” said one source.

The source said its aim was to try to anticipate future crises, be it military conflicts or humanitarian such as the recent storms that hit the Caribbean, and avoid situations whereby one country would be forced to intervene alone, as France did in Central African Republic and Mali.

The project is not on a list of 17 joint projects initiatives, including a European armoured infantry vehicle, agreed by the founding PESCO members.

PESCO members have yet to decide on whether to let non-member states join the projects, prolonging uncertainty over any future role for Britain after it leaves the EU next year.

As Europe’s biggest military power along with France, Britain is central to European security efforts but has long blocked defence integration.

However, Britain is seeking a security treaty with the EU by 2019, worried out missing out on key weapons projects.

The eventual aim of PESCO is to develop and deploy forces together, backed by a multi-billion-euro fund for defence research and development that is now under negotiation.

“The EU’s second-biggest army is leaving the union so this multilateral project makes sense when everything is being broken up,” said a French military source.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by KinderLad on Fri Apr 06, 2018 2:49 pm

Ma ok za EU, zanimljivije je sta ovo znaci za NATO

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Fri Apr 06, 2018 3:20 pm

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Zuper on Mon Apr 09, 2018 5:45 pm

Ladno ce Evropljani najvise nastradati od ovoga nadgornjavanja Rusa i Amera.
Zbog sankcija pream Rusalu, koji je drugi najveci proizvodjac aliminijuma na svetu, Rusi odlucili da prikoce i govore kako moraju da pogledaju posledice sankcija a cena alumijuma skace kao luda zbog toga. Evropa uvozi skoro 50% proizvodnje Rusala. A to je potrebno za nove automobile, avione...

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Mon Apr 09, 2018 6:07 pm

Russian markets hit by US sanctions and Syria fears

Moscow blue-chip index suffers biggest fall since Crimean crisis as rouble slides
Shares in Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska’s Rusal plunged on Monday in reaction to the US sanctions ©️ Bloomberg

Henry Foy in Moscow and Katrina Manson in Washington 23 minutes ago
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Russian stocks suffered their worst session in four years and the country’s bonds and currency plunged as the impact of new US sanctions against its economy and fears over increased conflict in Syria ravaged markets.

The Kremlin was left scrambling on Monday to find ways to support its companies and retaliate against Washington as the stock market sell-off spread far beyond the seven oligarchs and 14 companies hit by US sanctions late last week.

Investors worried about increased geopolitical risk bailed out of Russia-linked assets, sending Moscow’s blue-chip index down 8.7 per cent, its biggest single-day fall since the imposition of sanctions by the west in 2014 in response to Moscow’s invasion of Crimea.

The rouble fell 4.1 per cent against the dollar, the largest drop since 2016.

“Essentially, geopolitical risk has increased with the rouble the main casualty so far as Russia was strongly criticised for supporting Syrian President [Bashar al] Assad,” said Piotr Matys at Rabobank.

Russia came under increasing pressure over the weekend as Donald Trump led international condemnation of an alleged chemical weapons attack by the Syrian government. The US president warned there would be a “big price to pay” for the Syrian regime and its Russian and Iranian backers if reports of the alleged chemical attack were confirmed.

In a rare move, Mr Trump, who has made repeated efforts to improve relations with his Russian counterpart, called Vladimir Putin out by name on Sunday, accusing him on Twitter of being “responsible for backing Animal Assad”.

The Trump administration has taken a stronger line against Moscow in recent weeks, with senior officials warning that Russia has to learn there will be “consequences” for destabilising actions the White House says Moscow has taken against European allies and in the US.

The US said the sanctions imposed on Friday were linked to Russia’s actions in Crimea, Syria and Ukraine as well as its interference in the west, including its cyber activities.

Mr Trump is due to be briefed by his senior military officials on the alleged Syrian chemical attack later on Monday, while the UN Security Council is expected to meet in an emergency session.

John Bolton, a hawkish foreign policy expert who has regularly advocated military intervention, started work as Mr Trump’s new national security adviser this week.

James Mattis, defence secretary, said he would not “rule out anything right now”, in response to questions whether the US would launch air strikes on Syria in retaliation.

Dmitry Medvedev, Russian prime minister, said he would instruct the government to develop initiatives to support companies affected by the sanctions and also consider retaliatory measures in response.

Companies owned by Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska were the biggest casualties of Monday’s sell-off. Mr Deripaska and his entire business empire were hit by sanctions on Friday, and he warned of “materially adverse impacts” on future business prospects and potential technical credit defaults.

Investors wiped off half the value of his Hong Kong-listed aluminium producer Rusal and almost a third from his London-listed holding company EN+ in reaction to the sanctions.

Companies not affected by the US action were also hit hard, with Russia’s largest lender Sberbank and miner Norilsk Nickel both falling 16 per cent.

Sanctions on oligarchs set to resonate globally

The sanctions are designed to stop the targeted oligarchs, such as Mr Deripaska, from doing business in US dollars and cut them off from any dealings with US citizens. Mr Deripaska’s operations were hit further by a new provision expanding the sanctions to transactions involving non-Americans

“The biggest blow was taken by public companies controlled by Oleg Deripaska,” ATON, a Moscow brokerage, wrote in a note, adding that the market was looking for “possible actions to minimise” the damage.

Rusal produces almost 6 per cent of the world’s aluminium. The price of the metal jumped on Monday after lawyers and traders said many non-US customers would be wary of buying from the company because of the wide reach of the sanctions.

“We expect the risk of secondary sanctions will impact well beyond just US imports, and Rusal material will indeed be shunned by many non-US consumers and their financing banks,” said Oliver Nugent, a commodities strategist at ING.

Rusal said: “The company intends to continue to fulfil its existing commitments whilst seeking solutions (which may involve adjustments to its existing agreements and arrangements in accordance with legal and regulatory requirements) to address the impact of the [sanctions].”

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Fri Apr 13, 2018 7:44 pm

Germany pours cold water on euro reforms

   Next step is for Merkel (r) to agree a position with SPD (Photo: Consilium)

By Andrew Rettman
BRUSSELS, Today, 09:29

Germany is proving less keen than the European Commission had hoped to share its wealth with poorer EU states.

That reluctance is likely to push back deadlines for proposals on eurozone reform. It could even sink the commission's ideas on deeper monetary union, solidifying Europe's north-south economic divide.

One commission proposal was to create a European Deposit Insurance Scheme (EDIS) to protect up to €100,000 of savers' deposits in any eurozone bank.

European Council head Donald Tusk wanted to press ahead at an EU summit in June, but German MPs were still "far, far away" from agreeing to use German money to underwrite the scheme, Ralph Brinkhaus, the deputy head of chancellor Angela Merkel's centre-right CDU/CSU bloc told press in Berlin on Thursday (12 April).

"We are so far apart that hardly any results can be achieved at the EU summit in June," he said.

Another idea was to transform the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), the EU's intergovernmental bailout fund, based in Luxembourg, into a kind of European Monetary Fund (EMF).

But Brinkhaus said the ESM was "sufficient" as it was, adding, in a note of German austerity, that it should tie loans more strictly to creditor reforms.

He added that Germany would reject anything that looked like creating "euro bonds by the backdoor", referring to a third commission idea to create a new EU "safe asset" as an alternative to sovereign debt.

"It's a fishy proposal," he said.

The MP noted that eight northern EU states, where the bloc's wealth was concentrated, shared his scepticism.

He also said German voters shared it. He noted that dozens of German MPs had voted against the last Greek bailout in 2015 and that the EU should focus on border control, competition policy, and the digital single market instead of monetary union.

German chill

Even more cold water poured onto the eurozone plan from Jens Weidmann, the head of the Bundesbank, and a top candidate to replace Mario Draghi as the chief of the European Central Bank (ECB) next year.

Replacing the ESM with an EMF would not fly because it would give EU officials the power to levy national funds for future bailouts, he said.

"If this step would undermine the member states' existing right to have a say, it would have to be rejected because then liability and action would diverge - because it's the member states that are providing the guarantees for the risks taken by the ESM," Weidmann said in Berlin on Thursday, according to the Reuters news agency.

In related ideas, Germany is pushing the ECB to crack down on non-performing loans - a move that could raise costs for banks in southern Europe, whose lenders hold mountains of bad debt.

The problem is the worst in Greece, where 46.7 percent of loans look like they will never be repaid. Portugal stands at 17.8 percent and Italy at 12.3 percent.

The commission's eurozone reforms were put forward as part of Europe's political response to Brexit, which had posed questions on future EU integration.

They were broadly endorsed by Emmanuel Macron, the French leader, in a speech last September, and went beyond the EDIS and EMF, calling also for a single eurozone budget administered by the European Parliament and the creation of a eurozone finance ministry in Brussels.

Next step

The next step in Germany will be for Merkel to agree with Olaf Scholz, the centre-left SPD party's finance minister in the new grand coalition, on what to do.

But for those in southern EU states who might have hoped the SPD would loosen Germany's purse strings, Scholz already backs the CDU/CSU's slowly slowly approach, with the finance chief referring to the EU deposit-guarantee scheme as a "medium-term" project in German daily Handelsblatt on Friday.

Achim Post, the deputy head of the SPD, told the Reuters news agency on Thursday that his party still supported the commission's euro plan, but said Tusk's June deadline was premature.

"This certainly applies, in particular, to the establishment of a European deposit-guarantee scheme," he said.

Germany's position risks cementing the EU's north-south economic divide, at a time of east-west division over rule of law in Hungary and Poland.

"Time is running out," to agree on a euro-reform model, commission vice-president Valdis Dombrovskis told Handelsblatt this week.

"What we need are concrete choices about how the combination of risk mitigation and risk sharing should look like," he said.

Klaus Regling, the head of the ESM, also warned against the "risk of political inaction" despite the harsh lessons of the 2008 financial crisis.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Sun Apr 15, 2018 7:37 pm

Germany is frustrating Emmanuel Macron’s grand ambitions
The reality is that Paris and Berlin are no longer natural allies

Wolfgang Münchau 6 hours ago

The Franco-German honeymoon has ended. At the beginning of the year, Angela Merkel, German chancellor, and Martin Schulz, the former leader of the Social Democratic party, agreed that Germany would enter into a meaningful dialogue with Emmanuel Macron, the French president, on reform of the eurozone.

As it turned out, the eurozone agenda was a personal project of Mr Schulz’s, not of the SPD. When he was ousted as leader in February, the party lost interest. The grand coalition is once again in power, but now without the only interesting project that would have justified its existence.

Olaf Scholz, the SPD finance minister and the party’s new strongman, is notably cool on the whole idea. On the important issue of a European deposit insurance scheme, he is as sceptical as his predecessor, Wolfgang Schäuble.

The opposition to eurozone reform from inside Ms Merkel’s party, the CDU, and its Bavarian sister party, CSU, is as strong as ever. The CDU/CSU group in the Bundestag rejects all but one of the items on Mr Macron’s reform agenda. They do not want an enlarged European Stability Mechanism, the rescue umbrella, nor a single eurozone budget. And like Mr Scholz they do not want a European deposit insurance scheme until the Italian banks have managed to get rid of most of the bad loans on their balance sheet.

They do not want debt relief for Greece, either. The only reform idea for which there is some lukewarm support is that of a fiscal backstop to the bank resolution fund, something that should have happened a long time ago.

The message is clear: Germany is saying no to Mr Macron on eurozone reform, at least in substance. There may still be some token deal, perhaps a tiny eurozone budget with no macroeconomic significance. To add insult to injury, Ms Merkel also preemptively ruled out German involvement in military action against the Syrian regime.

I wonder how those two unrelated messages from Germany will be received. France is now in exactly the position Marine Le Pen, leader of the far-right National Front, has warned about: in a monetary union in which the voice of France counts for little and a geopolitical situation in which the UK is the more reliable partner.

Mr Macron’s enthusiastic support for European integration contrasts with the unchanged political reality that France and Germany are no longer natural allies. Unlike in France, the pro-European parties in Germany are in retreat. Ms Merkel’s party lost 1m votes to the Free Democrats and the Alternative for Germany, both of which advocate policies that would lead to the destruction of the eurozone. Sixty CDU/CSU MPs voted against the Greek support programme in 2015. If faced with a similar rebellion today, the grand coalition would no longer have a majority.

Does this make eurozone reform impossible? I do not think so. The June deadline for eurozone reforms was chosen because Mr Macron needs something concrete to show before the European elections in May 2019.

As a longstanding advocate of eurozone reform, I am finding myself in the unusual position of favouring a tactical retreat. It would be better to wait for a better moment to push the two issues that really matter, neither of which is on the agenda right now: the creation of a single safe asset, or a eurozone bond; and the legal and political separation of national governments and their banks.

Reformers should exploit the fact that the large and persistent current account surpluses of the northern eurozone countries make them vulnerable to a sudden disruption of trade flows. Only an existential crisis that threatens the very survival of the eurozone has the potential to concentrate minds in the northern eurozone. A very large current account surplus makes you strong in good times, but weak in bad. Now is not the moment to extract concessions from Germany or the Netherlands.

The alternative is wasting scarce political capital on weak reforms. We would also have to accept conditions that might add to financial instability, like Germany’s demand for a semi-automatic debt restructuring or caps on bank holdings of sovereign bonds. If the alternative is a big leap in the wrong direction, standing still would constitute relative progress.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Sun Apr 15, 2018 11:49 pm

William Murderface

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by William Murderface on Sun Apr 15, 2018 11:50 pm

"Oni kroz mene gledaju u vas! Oni kroz njega gledaju u vas! Oni kroz vas gledaju u mene... i u sve nas."

Dragoslav Bokan, Novi putevi oftalmologije

Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Guest on Mon Apr 16, 2018 5:12 pm

Evropska komisija najavila je da će zabraniti različiti kvalitet prehrambenih proizvoda pod istom markom i u istom pakovanju nakon žalbi na škart hranu, kao i pritiska članica iz centralne i istočne Evrope. Brisel je saopštio i da se radi na metodologiji za testiranje hrane a da bi kasnije na meti mogli da budu i drugi proizvodi, poput kućne hemije.

Obraćajući se novinarima posle mesečnog sastanka koledža komesara 11. aprila, evropska komesarka za pravdu i potrošače Vera Jurova rekla je da će Komisija pojačati borbu protiv različitog kvaliteta hrane. "Izmenili smo direktivu o nepoštenoj trgovinskoj praksi kako bi jasno istakli da je različiti kvalitet hrane zavisno od tržišta na koje ide zabranjen", istakla je Jurova.
"Time će nacionalne vlasti dobiti oruđe koje su tražili da stanu na kraj toj nelegalnoj praksi. Kao što je predsednik EK Žan-Klod Junker rekao u septembru, ne postoje građani EU druge klase", kazala je Jurova.
U govoru o stanju Unije u Strazburu 13. septembra 2017. Junker je obećao akciju rekavši: "Neću da prihvatim da se u nekim delovim Evrope ljudima prodaje hrana slabijeg kvaliteta nego u drugim zemljama iako su pakovanje i brend identični".
Ispitivanja koja je sprovelo više vlada iz centralne i istočne Evrope pokazala su da multinacionalne kompanije prodaju proizvode sa manje kvalitetnim sastojcima u "novijim" članicama EU a plasiraju ih u istim pakovanjima i sa istim brendom kao u Zapadnoj Evropi.
Različiti kvalitet hrane oštro su kritikovali lideri članica sa istoka EU. Bugarski premijer Bojko Borisov u junu je taj problem okarakterisao kao "aparthejd" po pitanju hrane dok je jedan zvaničnik mađarske vlade rekao da je to "najveći skandal u nedavnoj prošlosti".
Kada je skandal izbio, Komisija je u prvom trenutku saopštila da nije kompetentna za kvalitet hrane već samo za njenu bezbednost. Pravo industrije prehrambenih proizvoda da koristi različite sastojke koji zadovoljavaju različite nacionalne ukuse iskorišćeno je kao opravdanje.
Međutim, čini se da je politički pritisak članica iz centralne i istočne Evrope ubedio Komisiju da promeni stav. Komisija je tako članicama dala moć da "škart" hranu označe kao nelegalnu.
Istraživanja u brojnim zemljama istočne Evrope pokazala su da su mnogi proizvodi slabijeg kvaliteta nego proizvodi pod istim brendom i u istom pakovanju u "starim" članicama EU.
Na pitanje portala EURACTIV da li se EU zabrana odnosi samo na hranu ili i na druge proizvode, Jurova je objasnila da je Komisija počela od hrane i da će metodologija za testiranje proizvoda biti gotova u maju.
Članice će odlučiti kako će koristiti tu metodologiju, verovatno će taj posao biti poveren organizacijama potrošača.
Očekuje se da se metodologija testira u drugoj polovini 2018. a troškove će pokriti EU.
Jurova je kazala da će od istraživačkog centra, nakon što završi sa prehrambenim proizvodima, zatražiti da urade metodologiju i za ispitivanje deterdženta za veš.
Češki državni sekretar za evropske poslove Aleš Hmelar ocenio je Komisijin predlog kao veliki korak napred.
Međutim, češka evroposlanica Olga Sehnalova, koja se bori protiv različitog kvaliteta hrane od 2011, rekla je da o predlogu EK mora "detaljno da se razgovara sa nadzornim organima i da, pre svega, treba da bude razjašnjen".
"Prema Komisiji, pravo trgovca da prilagodi proizvod iz tzv. legitimnih razloga, poput dostupnosti sirovina i preferencija potrošača, treba da ostane. Moramo da 'zapušimo sve rupe' koje mogu da vode daljem nezadovoljstvu među potrošačima i tome da ni posle godina debata nismo u stanju da nešto preduzmemo protiv nepoštenog ponašanja".
"Ako proizvođači žele da izmene sastojke, to mora da bude savršeno jasno potrošačima. To neće biti laka debata", upozorila je Sehnalova.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Zuper on Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:35 pm

Makron: Prvo sebe da sredimo, Balkan neka čeka
Strazbur -- Francuski predsednik Emanuel Makron izjavio je da Evropska unija ne treba da prima nove članice dok se dublje ne integriše i ne sprovede reforme.

Makron je, u obraćanju poslanicima Evropskog parlamenta u Strazburu, rekao da želi da učvrsti Zapadni Balkan uz evropski projekat, ali da sada nije vreme za prijem novih članica.
"Podržaću proširenje samo ako prvo bude produbljivanja i reforme naše Evrope", naveo je on.

Makron je rekao da ne želi da se Balkan okrene Turskoj ili Rusiji, ali da ne želi da EU, koja danas teško funkcioniše sa 28, a sutra sa 27 članica, odluči da može da primi nove članice po istim pravilima.

Lideri Zapadnog Balkana i EU sastaće se sledećeg meseca na Samitu EU - Zapadni Balkan, ali male su šanse da Brisel u skorije vreme pozove neku od zemalja da se pridruži EU.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by KinderLad on Tue Apr 17, 2018 2:28 pm

7 godina minimum

do tada ce se ili reformisati ili ih realno nece bit

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by паће on Tue Apr 17, 2018 2:39 pm

Или ће донети толико прописа да ћемо онда ми подизати жичану ограду на граници.

Време је новац? Ајде. Кад имаш једно немаш друго.
how's your gosh, lately?

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Filipenko on Tue Apr 17, 2018 2:56 pm

Jedva čekam da vidimo šta će reći kada bude boravio u poseti tzv. Srbiji.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Thu Apr 19, 2018 8:56 am

Merkel’s ‘jumbo’ eurogroup revolution will poison trust in Paris
The chancellor’s plans may hollow out decision-making power and create a glorified talking shop
Mehreen Khan in Brussels 10 minutes ago

As Brussels institutions go, the eurogroup is a unique beast. The forum for the eurozone's finance ministers, which meets every month, sits outside the formal legal structures of the EU and has an agenda controlled entirely by its 19 member states.

The flexibility has proven useful. During the crisis years, the eurogroup emerged as the crucible for make-or-break decisions about the Greek bailout and Cypriot banking meltdown.

Angela Merkel now has big plans for the body. On the eve of her meeting with Emmanuel Macron in Berlin on Thursday, the chancellor is proposing to revolutionise the eurogroup. The hitch: it's likely to go down like a lead balloon in Paris.

Mrs Merkel told a meeting of her centre-right MPs earlier this week she wants to create a “jumbo eurogroup”. It would bring together finance ministers with their economy minister counterparts, meet about four times a year, and focus on German hang-ups like “convergence” and “competitiveness”. Handelsblatt has the story.

For critics, the “jumbo” title is deceptive. In widening the eurogroup to all areas of economic policy (structural reforms, labour markets, investment, etc) and gathering more ministers around the table, you effectively hollow out decision-making power and create a glorified talking shop.

“If you wanted to sabotage the eurozone reform drive, this would be a good way to go about it,” lamented one euro area official.

But for a chancellor facing a revolt of her right-wing conservatives over plans for deeper eurozone integration, the logic looks impeccable.

Mrs Merkel’s CDU party is still smarting from the loss of the powerful finance ministry in the new grand coalition. Under the jumbo blueprint, new SPD finance minister Olaf Scholz would have CDU economy minister and Merkel ally Peter Altmaier keeping an eye on him in Brussels.

And where Mr Macron has been fixated with new eurozone spending tools and more support for weaker economies, Germany and its creditor allies have been determined to make national governments take more responsibility. The Dutch, who before this week were the sole champions of a bigger eurogroup, are on board.

The danger for Mrs Merkel is that in appeasing her disgruntled MPs, she risks poisoning relations with an already frustrated Mr Macron. The pair meet for a crucial four-hour discussion on Thursday on how to advance the cause of eurozone reform ahead of a looming June deadline.

France has always championed the exclusive 19 euro-only format as the best way to get decisions made. Paris has also pushed for more centralised management of eurozone topics in Brussels rather than national capitals, supporting the idea of a special finance minister, which has already been kicked into the long-grass.

But Mrs Merkel's conservative eurogroup revolution may just confirm Mr Macron’s worst suspicions about German intentions for the euro project: institutional tinkering that distracts the debate from anything of substance.

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by Gargantua on Fri Apr 20, 2018 8:08 am

Macron Had a Big Plan for Europe. It’s Now Falling Apart.


BRUSSELS — Last September, the enthusiastic new French president, Emmanuel Macron, laid out big plans for the European Union, intended to give fresh spark and purpose to a bloc preoccupied with migration, populism and Britain’s exit, and to breathe new life into Franco-German leadership.

Then, as so often with the 28-nation bloc, reality and national interests got in the way. Last fall’s German election badly weakened Chancellor Angela Merkel, who needed six months to assemble a governing coalition, one that is even more wary about overhauls to the eurozone.

Last month’s Italian election gave the upper hand to populist, Euroskeptic parties that want to abandon pension changes and expand Italy’s worrisome national debt, adding to German jitters.

So after all the hoopla, Mr. Macron’s proposed overhaul has been gutted. If not “as dead as a dormouse,” as the German weekly Der Spiegel opined before his visit to Berlin on Thursday, his European initiatives have been heavily watered down, like the small glass of red wine French parents give to children.

And for fans of Europe, that’s too bad.

The window for meaningful changes is rapidly closing before next year’s elections for a new European Parliament, and the choices of a new European Commission, European Commission president and head of the European Central Bank. Projects and legislation not approved by June or by latest October will fall by the wayside until 2020.

It would be a shame to miss this chance, said Jacob Funk Kirkegaard, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics.

“It is urgent, a window of opportunity between now and European elections is real but narrowing,” he said. “The constellation of the most centrist German chancellor in a long time in her last term looking for her legacy and a French president, newly elected on a European platform and highly ambitious, is very rare.”

“If you think European reform can happen outside a crisis, you’ll never get a better constellation than now,” he added.

If populism and nationalism surged with the impact of the financial crisis, Mr. Macron argues, the best answer is a more integrated European Union that protects and benefits its citizens and a more sustainable eurozone, with its own budget, banking protections and financial management.

But resistance to Mr. Macron’s vision of more Europe is mounting, in Germany and beyond. The prospect of Britain’s exit from the union a year from now has prompted the smaller, more economically conservative nations of Europe’s north to come out firmly against Mr. Macron’s proposals.

“It’s getting hard politically, it’s getting hard timewise, and it’s getting hard in terms of momentum,” said Jean Pisani-Ferry, a French economist and former adviser to Mr. Macron. “Not only for the countries with no appetite for it, but for Germany, too.”

In Germany, new ministers are still figuring out their jobs, Ms. Merkel’s governing Christian Democrats are running to the right and the Social Democrats, the center-left party in the coalition, have silenced their most prominent pro-European voices.

Christian Democratic lawmakers have been pushing to anchor any financial overhaul to a treaty change, which in turn would require approval from individual parliaments, creating considerably more uncertainty and delay.

In a joint news conference on Thursday in Berlin, Ms. Merkel promised Mr. Macron some form of compromise over how to reinforce the euro and the eurozone’s banks.

“There are of course always different starting points when it comes to the opinions of Germany and France,” she said. “We need open debates and in the end we need the ability to compromise.”

But compromise will mean minor changes, and almost surely on German terms.

“The Italian political mess will be an alibi for Germany and bad news for Macron,” said Enrico Letta, the Italian former prime minister, at a meeting of the Ambrosetti Forum in Italy. “We’re wasting momentum.”

Nouriel Roubini, a globe-trotting economist who predicted the crash of a decade ago, said that the fundamental problems of the euro “won’t be solved until you have real fiscal and then political union. But for now, it’s stalled, and the Germans will see the Italian risks as another reason not to move forward.”

The Germans are “worried as ever that risk sharing becomes risk shifting, that a fiscal union becomes a transfer union,” he said.

Until eurozone countries like France, Greece, Italy and Portugal “have done enough fiscal austerity so that public debt is sustainable, and do enough reform so that their potential growth approaches that of Germany,” Berlin will hesitate, he added.

At the same time, Mr. Roubini said, Mr. Macron has made some important fixes in France, increasing market flexibility, taxing some pensions and cutting the budget deficit.

“So he can tell the Germans that ‘it’s not only cheap talk I’m delivering, and while you may not be able to accept full range of reforms, we can meet somewhere in the middle,’” Mr. Roubini said.

Macron proposals like a eurozone finance minister and a budget, to help countries deal with high unemployment or economic shocks, have been put aside while the bloc tries to make a few less spectacular and more technocratic fixes.

Given timing, the European Commission has narrowed its focus, said Valdis Dombrovskis, the commissioner in charge of the euro and financial stability. “We need to strengthen the resilience of the eurozone economy and its shock-absorption tools,” he said in an interview.

That means, he said, concentrating on promoting structural reforms in member states, completing a banking union and turning the European Stability Mechanism, created during the Greek debt crisis, into a more competent European Monetary Fund.

The idea is to protect eurozone countries and their banks from another crisis. But there are concerns about the governance of the new fund, about how much money would be involved and about how non-eurozone members would contribute.

There are also worries about the amount of nonperforming loans still held by banks in countries like Cyprus, Greece, Italy and Portugal, as well as the amount of sovereign debt they hold, given the lesson of the euro crisis that sovereign bonds are hardly risk-free.

So Germany and northern countries in particular are pressing for more “risk reduction” before “risk sharing,” Mr. Dombrovskis said.

That means that another key change intended to reassure citizens — a European banking deposit insurance scheme, like one in the United States — is unlikely to happen soon.

Instead, Mr. Dombrovskis said he hoped for gradual progress, increasing bank liquidity first before moving toward mutualization of debts, which remains a red line for Berlin.

“But we need to move during this mandate,” he said. “We must agree not to lose another year.” Given the populist surge, “We need Europeans to feel these positive economic figures in their pocketbooks, to show people that they are better off with Europe than without.”

But risks increase over time, with growth due to slow in the medium term, Brexit unresolved, Italy confusing and a possible trade war in the offing, noted Mujtaba Rahman, an analyst at the Eurasia Group. “Markets remain complacent for now, but it will not last forever,” he said.

Jyrki Katainen, the European commissioner for jobs and growth, said in an interview that “the main issue is trust among member states, which is not as good as it should be.”

Rather than a Macronian revolution, he urged evolution, and a road map for the next five or 10 years. “A longer perspective would help trust, with steps made conditional, so it’s not unbalanced,” he said.

Heidi Crebo-Rediker, who was the State Department’s first chief economist, said she foresaw a slow process. “Until you have confidence in all the banking systems, including Italy, and an agreement that risks can now be managed centrally, only then you take that final step forward,” she said.

“But just when you have the potential to move forward in France and Germany, there’s the potential for a real scare from the south, from Italy,” she added. “So even slow progress is now under threat.”

Mr. Katainen, a Finnish former prime minister, still sees progress coming from Paris and Berlin.

“Macron and Merkel get along well, respect one another, are both pro-European and ambitious,” he said. “Both want to leave a mark on Europe. I see Macron as pragmatic, setting his priorities for the future, but it doesn’t mean every detail must be done.”

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Re: EU - what's next?

Post by KinderLad on Fri Apr 20, 2018 4:56 pm

Naći če se negde na polatrećiničetvrt puta.

Re: EU - what's next?

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